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World Sends Relief To Iran Quake Victims - 2003-12-27


Rescue teams have arrived in Iran to help victims of Friday's devastating earthquake -- as fears mount the death toll could surpass 20,000 people.

Officials on the ground say they expect search teams using sniffer dogs to pull more victims out of the rubble.

Medical personnel are also working in the ancient city of Bam -- where an additional 30,000 people were injured.

The United States is sending thousands of kilograms of medical supplies from bases in Kuwait and 200 rescue and medical experts.

Russia sent aid hours after the Friday quake and Pakistan and Saudi Arabia dispatched several plane loads of relief goods and equipment. Turkey, meanwhile, sent trucks and cargo planes with rescuers, food and medicine.

Rescue efforts have been hampered by cold temperatures, and the loss of power, water and communication lines to the city. But relief workers have set up some tents. although thousands of survivors were left to spend a second night sleeping outside in freezing temperatures.

The International Federation of the Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies has launched an appeal for more than 12 million dollars to speed immediate relief to Iran.

Information for this report is provided by AP, AFP and Reuters.

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