$8 Million Airlift from Charlotte to North Korea
North Carolina-Based Samaritan's Purse Packs Jumbo Cargo Jet with 75 Tons of Emergency Supplies for N. Korea Flood Victims
Media Availability with Franklin Graham at Airlift The recent flooding in the Democratic People's Republic of North Korea is one of the country's most serious natural disasters - killing hundreds and wiping out thousands of homes, power stations, crops and roads. Now there is more danger as waterborne diseases begin to develop. In response, North Carolina-based Christian relief organization Samaritan's Purse has chartered a Boeing 747 cargo jet to airlift 75 tons of emergency and medical supplies to the country few are allowed access. The Billy Graham Evangelistic Association is also partnering in the effort matching a $50,000 grant from the United States Agency for International Development for the emergency response. WHAT: Airlift of $8 million in emergency aid to North Korea Franklin Graham available for interviews Photo and live opportunities during loading of 747 cargo jet WHEN: Wednesday, Aug. 29 at 4:00 p.m. WHERE: Charlotte-Douglas International Airport 4100 Yorkmont Road, Charlotte, N.C. Gate 44 "In spite of the political differences that divide our two countries, we need to do all we can to care for the people of North Korea," said Franklin Graham, president and CEO of Samaritan's Purse and the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association. "We pray for the North Korean people at this time, and we pledge to do all we can in the name of Jesus Christ to extend a hand of friendship and practical assistance to them during this period of suffering." The airlift will include medicines, medical supplies, antibiotics, plastic sheeting, temporary shelter materials, water filtration equipment, blankets, hand tools and other equipment. The airlift will leave Charlotte after midnight on Aug. 30 and arrive in Pyongyang Aug. 31 where Samaritan's Purse staff are on the ground to receive the airlift of medical supplies. The Graham family has had a long history and interest in the people of North Korea. During the 1930's the late Ruth Bell Graham (whose parents were medical missionaries in China), attended high school at the Pyongyang Foreign School. In 1992 and again in 1994, Billy Graham visited North Korea and met with its leader, General Kim Il Sung. Later, in 1997, Ruth Graham was able to return to the city where she had spent her high school years. In 2000, Franklin Graham was permitted to fly into North Korea and visited with then Foreign Minister Paek Nam Sun. In recent years, Samaritan’s Purse has been involved in various aid and development projects in the country, including ongoing work to provide tuberculosis care, refurbishing several operating rooms and providing equipment and supplies for a number of medical and dental facilities.