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U.S. ships will leave cyclone area

June 04, 2008|From Times Wire Reports

A top U.S. admiral says Navy ships off Myanmar's coast will leave after failing to get the military government's permission to help with cyclone relief efforts.

Adm. Timothy J. Keating, the top commander in the Pacific, said he wants the aircraft carrier Essex and accompanying vessels to resume their previously scheduled duties Thursday.

The ships were in the region for international exercises. Keating made them available to help with relief efforts after last month's cyclone, but Myanmar allowed only limited U.S. military aid flights and barred the ships from approaching. The admiral says several aircraft will remain in Thailand to support aid efforts.

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