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(Reuters) - An Australian aircraft aims to make an emergency flight to Antarctica this week to evacuate a member of a U.S. government expedition who may need urgent surgery, U.S. authorities said on Wednesday.

The U.S. National Science Foundation said the rare evacuation flight would be made to and from an ice runway or landing strip known as Pegasus near McMurdo Station, one of three year-round research outposts it runs in Antarctica.

An A319 Airbus from Australia's Antarctic research program will be used for the airlift, as no U.S. aircraft are in a position to respond to the situation quickly, the NSF said.

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