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US bolsters Indonesian partnership by extending troops' stay

A U.S. Air Force C-130 Hercules from the 374th Airlift Wing at Yokota Air Base, Japan flies over while 36th Mobility Response Squadron aerial porters, from Andersen Air Force Base, Guam load humanitarian supplies in Balikpapan, Indonesia Oct. 14, 2018. (U.S. Air Force photo by Master Sgt. JT May III)

A U.S. Air Force C-130 Hercules from the 374th Airlift Wing at Yokota Air Base, Japan flies over while 36th Mobility Response Squadron aerial porters, from Andersen Air Force Base, Guam load humanitarian supplies in Balikpapan, Indonesia Oct. 14, 2018. (U.S. Air Force photo by Master Sgt. JT May III)

U.S. Ambassador to Indonesia, Joseph R. Donovan Jr. poses with Col. Daniel Roesch, 36th Contingency Response Group commander, Tech. Sgts. Edward Feilen, Christopher Johnson, both assigned to the 36th Mobility Response Squadron, and Chief Master Sgt. William Hebb, 36th CRG superintendent, in Palu, Indonesia Oct. 15, 2018. The purpose of Donovan’s visit was to thank 36th CRG Airmen and conduct site visits of humanitarian operations in Palu, Halim and Balikpapan. (U.S. Air Force photo by Master Sgt. JT May III)

U.S. Ambassador to Indonesia, Joseph R. Donovan Jr. poses with Col. Daniel Roesch, 36th Contingency Response Group commander, Tech. Sgts. Edward Feilen, Christopher Johnson, both assigned to the 36th Mobility Response Squadron, and Chief Master Sgt. William Hebb, 36th CRG superintendent, in Palu, Indonesia Oct. 15, 2018. The purpose of Donovan’s visit was to thank 36th CRG Airmen and conduct site visits of humanitarian operations in Palu, Halim and Balikpapan. (U.S. Air Force photo by Master Sgt. JT May III)

BALIKPAPAN, Indonesia --

U.S. Air Force members assigned to the 36th Contingency Response Group at Andersen Air Force Base, Guam and 374th Airlift Wing at Yokota Air Base, Japan have extended their mission to support USAID’s humanitarian response to help people affected by the Indonesia earthquake and tsunami.

“This is what we mean when we say we are Indonesia’s partner,” said U.S. Ambassador Joseph R. Donovan Jr., “We will continue to assist the Government of Indonesia in its relief efforts.”

More than 330,000 people are homeless or without adequate shelter.

If needed, the extension will run until October 25 when the Indonesian government has decided to end the airbridge operations between Balikpapan and Palu. This will enable the continued transport of critical humanitarian supplies, cargo, and displaced people until the airbridge closes.

“Working side-by-side with our Indonesian and multinational counterparts has been extremely rewarding because I believe our combined efforts saved lives,” said Col. Daniel Roesch, 36th Contingency Response Group commander.