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Bush: US to Help Victims of Iranian Earthquake - 2003-12-26


President Bush says the United States will help the victims of Friday's earthquake in southeast Iran. The death toll from the disaster is continuing to rise with some Iranian officials putting it at over 20,000.

President Bush says he was greatly saddened to learn of the earthquake, the deaths and the damage left behind.

In a written statement, Mr. Bush offers condolences to all those touched by this tragedy. He says the thoughts of all Americans are with the victims and their families, and the United States is willing to help.

Earlier, White House spokesman Scott McClellan told reporters the Bush administration is putting together a humanitarian aid package. He did not go into specifics as to the type of assistance, or the means to get it to those in need.

The United States broke off diplomatic relations with Iran after militants stormed the U.S. Embassy in Tehran in late 1979, and held dozens of Americans hostage for 444 days.