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RESCUERS began reaching India's remote Andaman and Nicobar islands today, two days after a devastating tsunami, to find barely a third of residents on one were still alive.
On another, only piles of rubble and debris remained of the housing blocks of an air force base, a hundred officers and their families swept out to sea by waves higher than the two storey buildings in which they had sought shelter.
There has still been no contact at all with several of the islands, including one of the biggest, Grand Nicobar, which was closest to the epicentre of Sunday's earthquake which caused a tsunami that killed at least 36,000 across Asia.
Bejkhajorn Saithong, 39, told Reuters news agency he was searching for the body of his wife at the Ban Khao Lak Hotel, where body parts are jutting from the wreckage.
"My son is crying for his mother. I think this is her. I recognise her hand, but I'm not sure," he said.
THE Maldives is made up of close to 2000 small coral islands whose total area is 298 sq. kilometres, making it the smallest independent country in Asia.
It has a population of about 2,50,000. Most of the people are either of Sinhalese or Indian or Arab descent and nearly all are Muslims. Divehi, a Sinhalese dialect, is the main language.
There are not many ways of earning a living in a country situated in the middle of an ocean. Most of the people are engaged in farming or employed in the tourism industry. Some grow coconuts or make garments for export. The Maldives is a founder-member of SAARC (South Asian Association Regional Co-operation) of which India is a member state.
There was a spot of trouble in the Maldives in 1988 when mercenaries from Sri Lanka tried to overthrow the Government. The government asked India for help and Indian paratroopers soon restored order in the country. Now the only invasion that the Maldives fears is an invasion by the sea. Flooding occurs periodically in some islands and if the sea level rises due to global warming, some of the islands may go underwater permanently.
The capital of Maldives is Male.
THE confirmed death toll from the massive earthquake and tidal waves that devastated much of Asia's coastline passed 55,000 today, with officials warning the figure was likely to rise steeply.
In Indonesia, the government's disaster relief centre said at least 27,174 were killed after the country took the full force of the huge earthquake and tidal waves that swallowed entire coastal villages.
Indonesia's health ministry said at least 27,174 had been killed in the quake as the true scale of the catastrophe becomes clear.
The confirmed death toll from the massive earthquake and tidal waves that devastated much of Asia's coastline passed 55,000 Tuesday, with officials warning the figure was likely to rise steeply.
Originally posted by sanctum
Indigo_Child, any chance of a link?
Originally posted by Riwka
Just found this two sites in a hebrew newspaper.
Patient Names - All Phuket Hospitals
Phuket Inter Hospital - Looking for her family
[edit on 28-12-2004 by Riwka]
Magnitudes of Significant Earthquakes
The USGS Earthquake Magnitude Working Group compiled a list of significant, past earthquakes for which reliable magnitude estimates are available. This list is not static and will be reviewed annually by the National Earthquake Information Center and revised as new research and results become available. (May take some time to load.)
INDONESIA'S death toll leapt to more than 27,000 today as desperate SOS calls came from an obliterated coastline which is emerging as ground zero for a seismic cataclysm unleashed on Asia.
Great tracts of land remained under surging tides on the northwest tip of Sumatra island, 150km from the epicentre of the natural disaster which has claimed more than 55,000 lives, half of them in Indonesia.
As night fell three full days after the quake there was still no contact with many parts of the worst-affected area.Officials predicted the death toll could even triple as the full picture becomes clear
Waves a meter or more high swept completely across many islands. They extended over as much as half of Male, a relatively large island of 1.75 square kilometers,(0.7 square mile) pouring down the narrow, sandy streets and dashing against buildings including the president's office.
Kandolhudhoo, an island of 3,500 people in the northern atoll of Raa which had spent US$ million dollars on land reclamation over the past five years, was "uninhabitable" after being completely covered by water, Assistant Island Chief Mohammed Ali Fulhu told the Haveeru newspaper.
Residents were evacuated. Rather than trying to rebuild their island, the people would probably have to start new lives elsewhere, Fulhu said.