Pakistan — U.S. Continues Aid to Pakistan Flood Victims

WASHINGTON — The Unit­ed States is con­tin­u­ing to aid flood vic­tims in Pak­istan while work­ing with the Pak­istani gov­ern­ment to see if addi­tion­al U.S. mil­i­tary sup­port is required, Pen­ta­gon Press Sec­re­tary Geoff Mor­rell said yes­ter­day.

U.S. offi­cials also are look­ing into the need to begin pos­tur­ing forces to help, Mor­rell said.

The floods in the north­west­ern part of the nation have killed more than 1,500 peo­ple so far, he said. The floods, caused by heavy mon­soon rains, have affect­ed an esti­mat­ed 1.5 mil­lion peo­ple, and the rain con­tin­ues in the region.

Six U.S. heli­copters – includ­ing four Army CH-47 Chi­nooks and two Army UH-60 Black Hawks — are in Pak­istan sup­port­ing relief oper­a­tions, Mor­rell said. As of today, the air­craft have flown 18 sor­ties, he said, and evac­u­at­ed about 800 peo­ple from flood-affect­ed areas. They also have trans­port­ed 66,000 pounds of relief sup­plies, he added, and, as of yes­ter­day, deliv­ered near­ly 440,000packaged meals that con­form with Mus­lim law.

Mean­while, the Defense Depart­ment is ensur­ing it strikes a bal­ance between the needs of Pak­istan and oper­a­tions in Afghanistan. The U.S. assets that have been deployed there have been tak­en from Afghanistan, Mor­rell explained.

“We can do that for some peri­od of time, but ulti­mate­ly they are required in the the­ater of com­bat,” he said. How­ev­er, the Unit­ed States will go to “extra­or­di­nary mea­sures” to help the flood vic­tims, he added.

“We are look­ing at how to … meet the demand in Pak­istan with­out adverse­ly impact­ing oper­a­tions in Afghanistan,” he said. “We will find a way if we are need­ed to bal­ance both needs.”

U.S. Depart­ment of Defense
Office of the Assis­tant Sec­re­tary of Defense (Pub­lic Affairs)

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