Aid offers pour in for quake victims

The devastating earthquake which left thousands dead in Indonesia has prompted swift offers of aid and condolences from around the world.

    The earthquake has killed more than 3,000 people

    Kofi Annan, the UN chief, led those expressing sadness and said a UN disaster response team was ready to help with humanitarian relief.

    "The secretary-general is deeply saddened by the loss of life, the hundreds of injuries and the destruction suffered by the people of Indonesia after the earthquake that struck Yogyakarta on the southern coast of Java," a UN spokesman said.

    Britain and France also offered a quick response to the disaster that struck the historic city of Yogyakarta and its surroundings.

    "We're geared up to give any help that is required as soon we're asked to, and when we are asked, we will respond very, very quickly," said Hilary Benn, the British secretary of state for international development.

    Vladimir Putin, Russia's president, offered his condolences along with the president of China, Hu Jintao, and Giorgio Napolitano, Italy's head of state.

    European pledge

    The European Commission said it would release up to three million euros ($3.8 million dollars) in emergency aid in response to the devastating earthquake.

    "We are ready to help the victims of this tragedy and recognise how important it is to do it as speedily as possible," said Louis Michel, the EU humanitarian aid commissioner.

    The United Nations Children's Fund said it was preparing emergency aid for survivors including 2,000 tents and 9,000 tarpaulins.

    Japan said it was sending a relief team and was ready to provide aid.

    A team of about seven people including doctors and bureaucrats will head to Indonesia on Sunday to assess the needs, a Japanese foreign ministry official said.

    "If the government of Indonesia makes a formal request, we will respond," he said. "The Japanese government is always ready to help."

    Malaysia, which neighbours Indonesia, also said it would send a search and rescue team and medical supplies.

    Najib Razak, Malaysia's deputy prime minister, said a 56-member team, five doctors and paramedics would leave for the province on board a Royal Malaysian Air Force plane late on Saturday.

    The Spanish government also offered immediate assistance through the Spanish agency for international cooperation.

    SOURCE: AFP


    YOU MIGHT ALSO LIKE

    Interactive: Coding like a girl

    Interactive: Coding like a girl

    What obstacles do young women in technology have to overcome to achieve their dreams? Play this retro game to find out.

    Why America's Russia hysteria is dangerous

    Why America's Russia hysteria is dangerous

    The US exaggerating and obsessing about foreign threats seems quite similar to what is happening in Russia.

    Heron Gate mass eviction: 'We never expected this in Canada'

    Hundreds face mass eviction in Canada's capital

    About 150 homes in one of Ottawa's most diverse and affordable communities are expected to be torn down in coming months