21 March, 2011
Support for Japan
Foreign Minister, Murray McCully, says the New Zealand government will provide one million dollars to support Red Cross relief efforts in Japan.
“The money will be provided to the Japanese Red Cross to promptly support its aid and relief operations in the parts of Japan that need help the most,” said Mr McCully.
“It has been ten days since the earthquake and tsunami but the affected people still face a dire situation. The government believes it is an important time for the international community to rally and support the Japanese,” he said.
“Japan and New Zealand are very close partners, and it is natural that we support each other in times of great adversity, as we saw with the Japanese response to the Christchurch earthquake,” said Mr McCully.
The New Zealand government is also expressing its gratitude to the 50 New Zealand urban search and rescue workers who have been assisting in Japan and returned home over the weekend.
“Many of the team wanted to repay the Japanese for their help after the Christchurch earthquake and they have done that with their rescue efforts in Japan under challenging conditions,” said Mr McCully.
“I would also like to acknowledge the efforts of our consular staff in Japan and New Zealand who have worked around- the-clock to ascertain the safety and whereabouts of over 2200 New Zealanders,” he said.