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 Monday, 10 July 2006

The International Telecommunication Union and United Arab Emirates' Thuraya Satellite will cooperate to provide portable satellites for disaster relief.

Thuraya Satellite Telecommunications will be providing handheld satellite terminals as well as solar charges to help countries overcome disasters. ITU, meanwhile, will pay for airtime at discounted rates offered by Thuraya in addition to covering the transport costs of the equipment to and from disaster areas.

"The tsunami that wreaked havoc in south East Asia, the Kashmir earthquake, the Suriname floods, and the Indonesia earthquake have demonstrated the power of emergency telecommunications in saving lives and coordinating efforts during rescue operations such as the setting up of telemedicine links," said the ITU's chief, Yoshio Utsumi.

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