Friday, October 2, 2009

PACOM to Provide Military Assistance to Indonesia Relief Operations

U.S. Pacific Command (PACOM) will provide military support to Indonesia’s ongoing relief effort on the island of Sumatra.

A 7.6 magnitude earthquake struck on Sept. 30, with the city of Padang and surrounding area, near the quake’s epicenter, experiencing widespread damage.

The U.S. Embassy in Jakarta has responded to the Indonesian President’s statement allowing friendly nations to provide earthquake assistance. Because of the forward deployed presence of the U.S. military and past military-to-military interactions with the Indonesian military, the U.S. is poised to help as much as possible.

PACOM has military capabilities positioned in the region that are ready to support emergency relief efforts and minimize human suffering. U.S. military assets include a Humanitarian Assistance Survey Team (HAST) composed of personnel from various units within PACOM, an Air Force Humanitarian Assistance Rapid Response Team (HARRT), and the USS Denver with Marines from the 31st Marine Expeditionary Unit embarked.

As is typical in international relief operations, U.S. military efforts are in support of the U.S. State Department and U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) Office of Foreign Disaster Assistance.

PACOM will continue to work closely with the Indonesian Government, the U.S. Embassy, and international relief organizations of Indonesia on humanitarian assistance operations at the request and invitation of the Indonesian Government.

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