Pentagon sending four cargo planes to deliver ‘critical supplies’ to India
The Pentagon is sending to India four large cargo planes filled with “critical supplies” as the country battles a massive wave of new COVID-19 cases, the Defense Department’s top spokesperson said Monday.
Three Air Force C-5 Super Galaxies and one C-17 Globemaster will deliver “tons of very needed critical supplies,” including oxygen generation capabilities and personal protective gear, press secretary John Kirby told reporters.
Two of the aircraft, a C-5 and C-17, arrived Friday in Delhi, while the third plane is expected to reach the country Monday night and the fourth is expected on Tuesday.
Should there be a need for additional aid, Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin has conveyed to his Indian counterpart that “we’ll continue to do whatever we can to help,” Kirby added.
The coronavirus outbreak in India has worsened considerably over the past weeks, with new cases in the country spiking to nearly 375,000 in a single day, according to figures from Our World in Data.
The country has scrambled amid shortages of oxygen as the influx of COVID-19 patients puts mounting pressure on the Indian health care system.
The Biden administration has moved to help prevent the spread of the illness by banning most travel from India beginning Tuesday as well as making up to 60 million doses of the AstraZeneca vaccine available to other countries.