29 Dec 2004

A message of sympathy from Pacific Islands Forum to tsunami victims

3:42 pm on 29 December 2004

The secretary-general of the Pacific Islands Forum has extended a message of sympathy to the communities affected by the tsunami.

Greg Urwin, who says he is speaking on behalf of all Forum members, says several countries affected by the devastating tsunami are Forum Dialogue partners, including India, Indonesia, Malaysia and Thailand.

He says the tsunami is the latest in a series of climate and weather-related events to occur during 2004, which serve as a reminder of the critical importance of building resilience to cope with natural disasters.

Mr Urwin says this in itself provides a key message for the upcoming global conference on disasters, to be held next month in Hyogo, Japan.

He says the Pacific Plan for strengthening deeper regional cooperation will, amongst other activities, seek to address the needs of the region in regard to building resilience to disasters.