Nepal quake: US helicopters to join relief efforts

Washington, May 2: The US military is preparing to deploy helicopters in Nepal to support the ongoing relief efforts in the quake-hit country.

The US State Department on Friday said the move was aimed at conducting humanitarian assessments and delivering critical supplies to hard-hit areas outside Kathmandu, Xinhua news agency reported.


"This will be done in support of the Nepalese government in order to increase the flow of emergency supplies into the country and ensure that it reaches remote areas," Department spokesman Jeffrey Rathke said.

In addition, the US military is preparing to assist with airfield and logistics operations at Kathmandu's airport to expedite cargo off-loading operations, he said.

President Barack Obama told Nepali Prime Minister Sushil Koirala over the phone on Wednesday that his administration would do "all that it can" to help Nepal recover from the 7.9-magnitude quake that hit the Himalayan nation on April 25.

The quake has killed over 6,300 people and injured more than 14,000.

Washington had pledged $12.5 million in humanitarian aid and a nearly 130-person disaster-assistance response team along with 45 tonnes of cargo.


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