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For week ended December 05, 1999 Posted 24 Feb 2001

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Should Missionaries be evacuated over Y2K concerns? (Missionaries have wings clipped for Y2K)

Summarized by Kent Larsen

Should Missionaries be evacuated over Y2K concerns? (Missionaries have wings clipped for Y2K)
WorldNetDaily 2Dec99 B1
By David M. Bresnahan

Following up on reports that the U.S. State department will evacuate 800 employees from four eastern-european countries, WorldNetDaily's David Bresnahan asked LDS Church spokesman Michael Purdy if the Church had similar plans. However, Purdy said that the Church was unaware of the State Department's evacuation plans.

Purdy told Bresnahan, "We do look at the State Department travel warnings, but frankly I don't think anyone is aware of this (the evacuations)." After promising to look into the matter, Purdy didn't respond to WorldNetDaily by their deadline.

In an earlier news story for WorldNetDaily, Bresnahan reported on the State Department's evacuation plans, saying that the 800 State Department employees would be evacuated from Belarus, Moldova, Russia and the Ukraine, all former parts of the Soviet Union. These countries all have relatively high levels of computer use, but are economically unable to make the changes necessary to correct Y2K problems.

Mormon-News was unable to find any specific public notice made by the State Department on this issue, however, in the case of all four countries, the State Department's Travel warnings do state that the Department has "authorized the voluntary departure of eligible family members and employees who can be spared from duty." The Department's concern is over possible disruptions in energy supplies, which could lead to the disruption of other basic necessities.

Meanwhile, word that the LDS Church will restrict missionaries, employees and General Authorities from travel at year-end has gained widespread public attention, with one story from the Associated Press appearing in hundreds of newspapers.

Copyright 1998, 1999, 2000, 2001 Kent Larsen · Privacy Information