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U.S. TO AIRLIFT MEDICAL AID TO URAL REGION

The United States will airlift $1.8 million in urgently needed medical supplies Friday to the Soviet Ural region as part of a continuing international disaster relief initiative, the State Department said.

The supplies, including pharmaceuticals and medical equipment, will be divided among 12 facilities in seven cities near the Aral Sea, a salt-water basin.Health conditions in the region have deteriorated in recent months with the diversion of fresh water to irrigate crops and the worsening pollution of nearby rivers.

The shipment is the second arranged by Project Hope, an international non-profit health organization supported in part by the U.S. government.