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US donates humanitarian aid material to Cypriot Civil Defence
2006-08-04 13:02:34

Nicosia, Aug 4 (CNA) -- The US government has donated humanitarian aid material, which had reached Cyprus in the past few weeks to relieve the US citizens who fled war-torn Lebanon and found temporarily shelter in Cyprus.

The material was donated to the Cypriot Civil Defence to strengthen the Force in case there is a new wave of refugees from Lebanon.

The humanitarian aid consists of around 7,000 sheets, 6,600 towels, 4,500 pillows, 1,900 cots, shower facilities, 36,000 ready meals, medical goods and comfort kits.

"We would like to present this to the people of Cyprus as a token of our deep appreciation for everything that you have done for our 13,500 citizens over the course of the last three weeks", US Ambassador in Nicosia Ronald Schlicher said. Civil Defence Commander Christos Kyriakides thanked the US government and said that the aid offered today would be used to help a new wave of refugees that is imminent. He noted that 70% of the donation is of US origin, the rest 30% is returned items, since it concerns Cypriot Civil Defence material that had been used by the 8,000 US citizens who temporarily stayed at the International State Fair premises in Nicosia, before leaving. Kyriakides said that European Civil Defence Forces have expressed their readiness to send the necessary equipment to help Cyprus in the event of a new wave of refugees and added that Germany?s Minister of Interior, Wolfgang Schaeuble, had called him to assure him that Germany "would make a huge contribution". The US diplomat expressed once more his gratitude towards the government and the people of Cyprus "for the amazing cooperation the US government received in the effort to evacuate via Cyprus over 13,500 Americans who found temporarily safety in Cyprus before leaving to the US". "We should concentrate on the 13,500 cases that have been successfully dealt with. That is really a miracle, and it is a miracle that we have done together", he said. At the International State Fair premises in Nicosia, over 8,000 US citizens have found shelter during the past few weeks, before leaving for the US. "This effort was remarkable and shows the close ties and shared values that American and Cypriot citizens have", Schlicher said.

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