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James Addis NZ Aid Worker Leaves For Iran

NZ Aid Worker Leaves For Iran

Seasoned journalist and aid worker, James Addis, leaves New Zealand tonight (7pm) for earthquake-struck Bam, Iran, where 20,500 bodies have been recovered and the death toll is expected to rise to over 30,000.

Mr Addis, Press Officer for World Vision New Zealand, will be assisting with communications and logistics movement of relief supplies. He will be flying out of Dubai on a relief flight on Thursday 1 January, on a plane filled with tents for the more than 100,000 people left homeless in the devastated city of Bam.

Mr Addis has worked in many crisis situations, including Iraq, Afghanistan, East Timor, Sudan and Rwanda, but this is the first time he will be assisting with a natural disaster.

"It's difficult to know what to expect. Although there won't be the danger of war, the devastation will be huge, with the large numbers of lives lost, people mourning, and buildings and livelihoods destroyed. We know that the Search and Rescue phase of the relief operations has now stopped, and there is no hope for more survivors," he says.

Mr Addis has been told to bring his own sleeping bag, tent, winter clothing and rain gear. "World Vision workers are living and working in primitive conditions in Bam, alongside the surviving population."

World Vision NZ has committed $NZ50,000 to the Bam earthquake relief appeal, and donations can be made on 0800 80 2000.

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