US sends relief aid to Pakistan, India flood victims

KALAM — US Army choppers flew their first relief missions in Pakistan's flood-ravaged northwest, airlifting hundreds of stranded people to safety from a devastated tourist town and distributing emergency aid.
Four US Chinook helicopters landed Thursday in the resort town of Kalam in the Swat Valley, which has been cut off for more than a week, according to an Associated Press reporter in the area. They flew hundreds of people — many of them vacationing there — to safer areas lower down, he said. The northwest valley is a former Pakistani Taliban stronghold.
A US Embassy spokesman said 800 people were evacuated and relief goods distributed.
In the country's south, authorities began evacuating half-a-million people as the worst monsoon rains in decades threatened new destruction..
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