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Foreign Affairs Minister Murray McCully and Defence Minister Jonathan Coleman say an RNZAF C-130 Hercules has landed in cyclone-ravaged Samoa with additional relief supplies.
“At the request of the Samoan Government we sent a Hercules to Apia with essential humanitarian supplies and diesel generators to support the relief and recovery effort,” Mr McCully says.
“There is an urgent need for generators to ensure the Samoa Water Authority can pump and transport water to affected communities.
“In addition, we sent staff from the New Zealand Ministry of Civil Defence and Emergency Management to work within the Samoa National Disaster Management Office.”
Mr McCully says further supplies were also sent to Fiji, with 300 large tarps, 20 generators, 10 chainsaws and 150 shovels arriving in Nadi on a commercial flight this afternoon.
Dr Coleman says he is pleased the New Zealand Defence Force has been able to support the authorities in Samoa and Fiji following Cyclone Evan.
“The involvement of the Defence Force C-130 plane reflects the next stage of the relief effort. The P3 – Orion was used extensively for search and rescue and initial damage assessment flights. The focus is now on the transportation of essential supplies for humanitarian assistance,” Dr Coleman says.
New Zealand has provided $2.6 million to Samoa and $2.4 million to Fiji since Cyclone Evan hit a week ago.