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IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Release No: 196-97
April 24, 1997

DOD SEEKS TO IMPROVE GULF WAR UNIT LOCATION INFORMATION

Bernard Rostker, special assistant for Gulf War illnesses, announced today that former Gulf War division and brigade operations officers will meet to assist in identifying unit locations in the DoD Persian Gulf Registry.

During the months of April and May, selected officers of units that were in the vicinity of Khamisiyah will meet at the U.S. Armed Services Center for Research of Unit Records (USASCRUR), located near Fort Belvoir, Va. They will gather in small groups for a week at a time to assist in clarifying unit locations throughout the duration of the war. The officers participating in this effort are representatives from the following units that participated in the Gulf War: XVIII Airborne Corps, 101st Air Assault Division, 24th Infantry Division, and the 82nd Airborne Division. While determination of units' daily locations is the primary focus, each officer will also be afforded the opportunity to contribute his insights regarding information on possible unit exposure to environmental incidents and any information concerning the location of operational records that might still be available.

This effort is being accomplished in conjunction with the Gulf War Declassification Project. This project was established by the deputy secretary of defense in March 1995 to conduct a DoD-wide review of all operational records to find those which could help shed light on veterans' illnesses, to provide useful documents to the office of the special assistant for Gulf War illnesses, and to post declassified health-related documents on the DoD Worldwide Web site, GulfLINK. As of December 31st, 5.4 million documents have been reviewed throughout the Services and over 65,000 pages posted to GulfLINK.

In the search for causes of Gulf War illnesses, this is an important step to improve our ability to track unit movements and to understand the hazards our soldiers may have encountered. The information in this database offers a point of departure for additional analysis and is a significant tool to assist in our efforts to take care of our soldiers and veterans of the Gulf War.

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