The Department of Defense has received approval through the Russian Embassy to
ship excess medicines and medical supplies to the Northern Pacific island of
Sakhalin as part of ongoing earthquake relief efforts.
Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense for Humanitarian and Refugee Affairs
(HRA) Patricia L. Irvin said the Department, in cooperation with other
government agencies and within the limits of its resources, understands and
strives to fulfill its responsibility to help alleviate suffering throughout
the world. She said the Humanitarian Assistance Program is often the most
economical means available to local charitable organizations to transport
donated goods to foreign countries for humanitarian purposes.
The 1986 DOD Authorization Act authorizes HRA to transport non-lethal excess
property, relief supplies, and privately donated cargo to meet humanitarian
needs worldwide. Over the past two years, more than 370 transportation
missions have been accomplished to more than 50 countries.