TAMPA, Fla. (AP) - The United States is more than doubling the
number of helicopters it is providing to help in flood-ravaged
Pakistan.

Defense Secretary Robert Gates says the USS Peleliu is now off the coast near Karachi, carrying 19 helicopters and a complement of about 1,000 Marines.

The helicopters will help rescue people and deliver food and
other supplies. They will replace six combat helicopters on loan
from the U.S. war effort in Afghanistan.

Gates and other U.S. officials say the Pakistani military has had to divert attention from fighting insurgents to help in flood relief.

The U.S. is trying to lighten that load.


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