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Belarus Flies Humanitarian Aid To Tajikistan

Flood damage in Khorugh, Tajikistan
MINSK -- Belarus dispatched 32 tons of humanitarian aid to Tajikistan by air today, RFE/RL's Belarus Service reports.

The aid, mainly food, clothes, and blankets, is headed for those regions of Tajikistan recently hit by landslides and floods.

Vital Navitski, the press secretary of the Belarusian Ministry for Emergency Situations, told RFE/RL that the humanitarian aid is worth 500 million Belarusian rubles ($166,500).

He said this is not the first humanitarian aid sent by Minsk to Tajikistan. Belarus provided similar aid in 1999, 2008, and 2009.

"Tajikistan was hit by an earthquake in January, then recently some regions suffered from floods and landslides. The Tajik government asked the Belarusian government for help, which we are now providing," Navitski said.

Tajik authorities say 12 people died in floods in the south of the country last month, though locals say the death toll is much higher.