JOPLIN, Mo. (AP)- The rebuilding of the Joplin hospital destroyed in last year’s tornado is getting a big boost from United Arab Emirates, a $5 million gift for a pediatric section and development of a neonatal intensive care unit.

United Arab Emirates Ambassador Yousef Al Otaiba (Oh-TAY’-buh) announced the gift on Friday in Joplin, just days before the first anniversary of the May 22, 2011, twister that killed 161 and destroyed 8,000 buildings, including Mercy Hospital.
The oil-rich Persian Gulf nation has stepped in to help Joplin before. Last year, United Arab Emirates made a challenge grant donation worth up to $1 million to provide new laptop computers for all 2,200 high school students. Volunteers from United Arab Emirates also helped build Habitat for Humanity homes in Joplin.

(© Copyright 2012 The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

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