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UK Sends Humanitarian Assistance to Support Tonga

Wahyu Dwi Anggoro - 21 January 2022 11:56 WIB
UK Sends Humanitarian Assistance to Support Tonga
UK Foreign Secretary Liz Truss (Photo:twitter/@trussliz)
London: The UK is sending vital humanitarian assistance to support Tonga respond to the catastrophic tsunami that hit the islands.

The UK will redeploy a Royal Navy ship and work with Australia and New Zealand to deliver vital aid to Tonga after a once in a thousand year volcanic eruption caused a catastrophic tsunami to hit the islands.
"Our thoughts are with those caught up in the appalling devastation and loss of life caused by the tsunami in Tonga. UK supplies and technical expertise will provide urgent assistance to Tonga, working alongside Australia to support a stable and prosperous Indo-Pacific," Foreign Secretary Liz Truss said in a press release on Friday.

UK-funded supplies will be onboard the Royal Australian Navy’s HMAS Adelaide, which is due to set sail for Nuku’alofa this morning, while Defence Secretary Ben Wallace has authorised Royal Navy ship HMS Spey to sail to Tonga to support the humanitarian and disaster relief effort.

In total 17 pallets of supplies are being sent on HMAS Adelaide today, all items provided were at the request of the Tongan government, including 90 family tents, 8 community tents and 6 wheel barrows.

The humanitarian aid and assistance will provide support to the Commonwealth nation, which has suffered significant damage and loss of life, to respond to the catastrophic event.

HMS Spey is alongside on a planned stop in Tahiti and will set sail for Tonga later today, having embarked supplies including water and medical equipment.

"In response to the devastating eruption in the Pacific Ocean I have instructed HMS Spey to sail to Tonga to assist in the humanitarian aid operation. The UK will work closely with Australia and New Zealand to assist the recovery effort in Tonga and stands ready to support our long-standing Commonwealth partner," Defence Secretary Ben Wallace said.

In addition, the UK has offered to fund the deployment of crisis experts through the United Nations. They would support the Tongan authorities to coordinate the international response.

The UK-funded International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies’ Disaster Relief Emergency Fund (DREF) has also released £345,000 to support Tonga. 

The UK has committed a £6 million contribution to the DREF through an annual £1.5 million donation 2020-2023.

The UK is a longstanding and trusted partner to Pacific Island countries and the UK Armed Forces are committed to stability in the region.

(WAH)

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