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Tonga volcano relief efforts face challenges: UN
Tonga volcano relief efforts face challenges: UN

United Nations, Jan 19 (TIWN) Relief efforts following the Tonga volcano eruption face the challenge of severed communications, falling ash closing the major airport and strict anti-Covid measures, UN officials said.

They said the casualty toll remained at three dead and an unknown number of people injured.  "Needs assessments by the Tongan authorities are ongoing and should provide a better estimate of what is required of the international community," said Stephane Dujarric, spokesperson for UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres.   "We are on standby with teams and emergency supplies, and stocks in Tonga are being readied for distribution once humanitarian needs are identified."  Australia and New Zealand have promised immediate financial assistance to Tonga.

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