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    Russian diplomats assist Russians in hurricane zone

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    MOSCOW, August 31 (RIA Novosti) - Officials from the Russian Consulate General in Houston (Texas, USA) are providing assistance to Russians in the zone affected by Hurricane Katrina, a Russian foreign ministry official said Wednesday.

    "Diplomats from the Consulate General are providing assistance to Russian citizens as they search for their relatives and friends, [and are] establishing contacts with local rescue services and humanitarian aid agencies," the Russian diplomat said. "The Consulate General officials provide practical consulate services, including providing new ID papers and other forms of assistance."

    According to the diplomat, the consulate is maintaining contacts with federal and regional emergency centers, with the U.S. Department of State's Bureau of Consular Affairs and regional Red Cross offices to locate people based on individual requests.

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