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ARLINGTON, Va. — The Defense Department is considering sending the 22nd Marine Expeditionary Unit to Bangladesh to help with cyclone relief efforts, a military official said Friday.

The official stressed that the government of Bangladesh has yet to formally request such help.

An official at Bangladesh’s embassy in Washington said Friday morning that he would look into whether his government would ask for U.S. assistance.

The 22nd MEU is aboard the USS Kearsarge Expeditionary Strike Group, which is currently in the U.S. Central Command theater of operations, according to the Navy.

Based in Camp Lejeune, N.C., the unit’s deployment began July 31. So far, the 22nd MEU has conducted training at Camp Buehring in Kuwait, provided air support for troops in Iraq and helped deliver humanitarian supplies in Djibouti, Africa.

In June 1991, about 7,000 U.S. servicemembers helped with relief efforts as part of Joint Task Force Sea Angel after a cyclone killed 130,000 people there.

Recently, Japan-based Marines trained with Bangladesh’s air force as part of Exercise Sumo-Tiger between Oct. 24 and Nov. 1.

A spokesman for the 22nd MEU deferred comment on cyclone relief efforts to 7th Fleet on Friday.

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