06 March, 2007

Update#5 - Quake In Indonesia / Assessments Underway

Via E-Mail from UNICEF's Emergency Officer, Lina Sofiani, in Indonesia:
UNICEF has sent two staff members and a member of UN-OCHA (Office for Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs) is on his way to the affected area. They will assist in a joint UN – Indonesian Red Cross (PMI) rapid assessment of the situation, the UN agency's emergency supplies are located in Northern Sumatra (Medan) and they will be deployed, if needed, following tomorrow's assessment.
Hospitals have been overrun with patients and local officials say more than 200 people have been injured. Hundreds of buildings have been destroyed or damaged and aid supplies have been hampered since the road from Padang to Solok has been affected. Mobile phones in some areas are still working (Confirmed with team at Jalin Merapi that SMS is operational!).

Relief teams are still awaiting for a formal request by the Indonesian Government for International Assistance which will allow the UNDAC to carry our urgent OCHA-ROAP deployments and broadcast a M3 or a message to aid agencies and SAR (Search And Rescue) Teams that have been placed on standby such as DHL's Disaster Response Team in Singapore that has offered support with logistics and Telecoms Sans Frontiers (TSF) alongside international non governmental organizations like GDACS JRC for coordination from the European Commission and SARAID for rescue from the UK. The Government of the Netherlands has donated € 1.5 mln in total through IOM and Netherlands/Indonesian Red Cross for relief items (tarpaulins, hygiene kits, food packages, sarongs, family kits, body bags, medicines) as well as logistical support. A source at Oxfam has informed us that their team is based in Yogya, in country and they are investigating the situation and talking to partners to see whether they should respond, at this time the feedback recevied is that the disaster reponse so far is localised.

If you have any information that you feel is useful regarding help needed or help offered, requests for urgent assistance from the ground in affected areas, then please email us on indonesia[at] or leave us a comment, at present we are interfacing with various international aid agencies and crisis response teams that have been either mobilized or placed on standby for this natural disaster and are coordinating with them. Shortly, we'll be releasing a link to a wiki page which lists critical contact information for all stakeholders responding to this crisis.

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