Canada sends blankets to Japan

Canada is initially sending 25,000 blankets to help the Japanese aid effort, the federal government has announced.
A woman cries while sitting on a road amid the rubble of Natori, Miyagi prefecture. Canada is sending 25,000 blankets to help those injured and displaced. (Asahi Shimbun/Reuters)

Canada is initially sending 25,000 blankets to help the Japanese aid effort, the federal government has announced.

The shipment by a commercial airline was to leave Toronto at 6 a.m. ET Wednesday, Foreign Affairs Minister Lawrence Cannon  and International Co-operation Minister Bev Oda said in a statement.

The shipment is aimed at helping the thousands of people injured and displaced by Japan's earthquake, tsunami, and nuclear disaster at Fukushima. It is expected to be followed up by further material and expertise.

"The array of capabilities that the government of Canada has offered to the government of Japan includes a 17-member disaster victim identification team, chemical, biological, radiological and nuclear technical expertise and equipment, Canadian Forces military assets to facilitate humanitarian relief efforts, relief stocks, and emergency medical and engineering capabilities," Cannon said in a statement.