LIMA, Peru — Residents of the towns of Yanama, Yanamilla, San Cristóbal, Azángaro and Luricocha, located in the department of Ayacucho, are grateful for the social support they received from the New Horizons 2008 humanitarian mission, reported the Radio Programas del Peru radio station.
The aid operations took place from the 1st of June to the 30th of August in areas afflicted by poverty and terrorist violence.
The work of New Horizons 2008 was highlighted by the Peruvian Defence Minister, Ántero Flores-Aráoz, who praised the U.S. Southern Command for having organised and sponsored the arrival of this humanitarian mission.
According to the U.S. embassy in Lima, New Horizons 2008 was the most important exercise carried out by the Southern Command this year.
This diplomatic office reported that 375 U.S. soldiers took part in this social aid operation.
Mary Pekas, a member of the U.S. Air Force, said to Caretas magazine that the doctors on the Emergency Medical Team had attended to 750 people on low incomes a day, who received medications to relieve health problems.
New Horizons 2008 provided free medical attention within the specialist fields of dentistry and ophthalmology. Furthermore, it contributed to building schools and medical centres, stressed the U.S. embassy in Peru.
For her part, the dentist Elena Ramírez said, The most common oral problem was cavities. They all had them, and because they weren’t cured due to lack of resources, their teeth were infected and had to be removed.
Visits Prior to Peru
New Horizons 2008 had already passed through Guatemala and El Salvador, before arriving on Peruvian soil.
The US Comfort, a ship which formed part of the New Horizons humanitarian mission in 2007, provided 40,000 Peruvians with medical attention.