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Heavy rain falls on corpse-littered Aceh BANDA ACEH - Heavy rain fell on Indonesia's corpse-littered city of Banda Aceh Saturday, creating the conditions for cholera and other waterborne diseases to spread and adding to the misery of the thousands made homeless by the quake and tsunamis. A steady stream of foreign military aircraft _ including the first Blackhawk helicopters off of a U.S. aircraft carrier _ touched down at the airport close to this provincial capital with emergency aid. But officials acknowledged distribution networks were not in place to deliver the supplies to the most hard-hit areas.
President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono arrived here Saturday to inspect the relief efforts. It was his second trip to the devastated zone. "The scale of the disaster is just too big,'' he said before boarding a helicopter to the shattered fishing village of Meulaboh. "We can bring in the aid, food, but we need manpower to distribute them.'' Amid reports of looting and fears of aid being stolen, Gen. Da'i Bachtiar, the national police chief, was traveling with president.
"There will be people who will take advantage of the situation,'' he said. "We've got very limited personnel for supervision. We are continuing to add from outside the region.'' Sunday's quake-and-wave disaster devastated the northern part of Indonesia's Sumatra Island. The official death toll stood at 80,246 late Friday night, but Health Minister Siti Fadillah Supadi said it could reach 100,000. The tsunami left only a handful of buildings standing. About a quarter of the town's 40,000 people were feared dead, but only a fraction of that number had been found.
Saturday's rainstorm -- the first since Sunday's disaster -- will concern health workers, who have warned that heavy rain could help spread diseases like cholera and diarrhea. Thousands of uncollected corpses remain in and around the city. At one refugee camp on the grounds of the airport, hundreds of refugees had spent a damp night under plastic sheets. Mothers nursed babies while others tried to spark a fire with damp matches.
"With no help we will die,'' said Indra Syaputra. "We came here because we heard that we could get food but it was nonsense. All I got was some packets of noodles.'' Yudhoyono, addressing the nation on New Years Eve, called for the country's 210 million people to cancel celebrations and remember the victims with prayers. "We are still mourning. Let's pray together and hopefully God will not give us another disaster.'' Relief teams from Taiwan, Australia, South Korea and other nations are already on the ground in Banda Aceh. A handful of representatives from international aid organizations are also assessing the conditions before a massive aid effort is expected to start in the coming days.



Posted in Earthquake @ 01 January 2005 00:02 CET by Jeroen · 'Blog' RSS feed · permalink

indahnesia.com lists all earthquakes that occur in Indonesia. For your convenience we display them in a list and a Google Map. It is as accurate and recent as you can imagine as we check for updates every few minutes. If an earthquake occurs in Indonesia, this is the place to check it out in the first place.






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