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Australia provides donation, experts to US for hurricane victims
Updated: 2005-09-02 15:59

Australia will provide millions of dollars of donation to the United States to assist those most affected by the devastation wrought by Hurricane Katrina, and has offered more experts to help provide emergency assistance.

Announcing the donation Friday, Australian Prime Minister John Howard said Australia is sending a small team of emergency management specialists to the United States as an immediate first step.

The team will work urgently to identify in what fields further practical Australian assistance might be most effective.

A further group of between 15-20 experts has been offered to the US authorities to help provide emergency assistance on the ground, Howard said.

"We have offered help in areas where specialist Australian expertise might be useful in public health and in disaster victim identification where our recent experience in our region may be valuable," Howard said in a statement.

Howard said the money would be given to the US Red Cross and would be used to provide blankets, food parcels and all the sorts of things.

More than 50 Australians are believed to be trapped in New Orleans, the devastated city of the United States, and surrounding areas.

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