Greece promised on Monday that it will provide emergency humanitarian and food assistance to the wider area of New Orleans in the United States, which has suffered heavy damage from the devastating Hurricane Katrina.
Government Spokesman Theodoros Roussopoulos told reporters that the Greek foreign ministry has undertaken an initiative to provide emergency humanitarian assistance to the hurricane victims and for restoration of the devastation caused by Hurricane Katrina in the wider area of New Orleans.
He said the Greek assistance included emergency humanitarian and food aid via the European Union, the dispatch of a team of rescue workers, and the dispatch of two passenger ships to provide shelter for the coming months to locals left homeless by the hurricane, adding that the offer was immediately accepted by the US authorities.
Roussopoulos added that the foreign ministry was in constant contact with the US State Department, via the Greek diplomatic delegations, to advance requests for locating Greek Americans in the devastated area put forward by their relatives in Greece.
A foreign ministry announcement said that US Ambassador to Greece Charlies Ries communicated on Sunday with Greek foreign minister Petros Molyviatis, to whom he conveyed US president George Bush's warmest thanks and the gratitude of the American people for the offer of aid, and particularly the active solidarity displayed by the Greek government and people from the very first moment to the residents of the stricken areas.