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Australia in for the long haul: PM JAKARTA - Australian troops and aid workers would stay in Indonesia to help rebuild tsunami-torn areas for as long as they were needed, Prime Minister John Howard said today. In a speech broadcast to the nation tonight, Mr Howard said the south-east Asian tragedy demanded a long-term response. "A tragedy of this magnitude ... requires a long-term commitment of resources if shattered communities are to be rebuilt and survivors provided with some hope for the future," he said.
"The loss of life and destruction in Indonesia, our nearest neighbour, has been truly staggering. At least 110,000 people have lost their lives in Aceh alone." Internationally, more than 156,000 people died in the Boxing Day tsunami disaster. Australians unconfirmed death toll stands at 22. Australia's aid efforts have concentrated on its near neighbour, with the announcement this week of an unprecedented $1 billion aid package for Indonesia.
The money would go some way to help reconstruct the stricken region, Mr Howard said, as well as being an historic step in Australian-Indonesian relations. "Australians were the first foreigners on the ground in Indonesia after the disaster - a fact gratefully acknowledged by President Yudhoyono during our recent meeting in Jakarta," he said. "We will stay as long as we are needed."
Australia also would continue to help other affected countries, the prime minister said. "For example, Australian police officers are playing a leading role in identifying victims in Thailand and arrangements are in hand to send schoolteachers to the Maldives and scientific experts to help in repairing the damage to that country's coral reef system," he said.
On behalf of the nation, Mr Howard thanked the many Australians working around the clock to provide relief to people in tsunami-affected areas. "I especially thank the men and women of the Australian Defence Force, officers of the Australian Federal Police and their state colleagues, medical workers, staff from the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade and many other Australian government departments and agencies who have come together in a great national effort," he said.
"The crisis has seen the Australian Public Service working at its dedicated and professional best. "Thanks are also due to the large number of Australians working for non-government relief organisations, often as volunteers."



Posted in Earthquake @ 10 January 2005 00:03 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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