TC Winston

$5 million assistance from Australia

The government of Australia has provided an initial package of $5 million in response to the devastation caused by Tropical Cyclone Winston.  Australia’s Minister for Foreign Affairs, Hon Julie Bishop said Australia’s thoughts are with the people of Fiji, particularly those who have lost family and friends as a result of the cyclone. I commend […]

Peni Shute

February 22, 2016 11:57 am

The government of Australia has provided an initial package of $5 million in response to the devastation caused by Tropical Cyclone Winston. 

Australia’s Minister for Foreign Affairs, Hon Julie Bishop said Australia’s thoughts are with the people of Fiji, particularly those who have lost family and friends as a result of the cyclone.

I commend the Government of Fiji for the preparedness measures in place to protect its citizens and limit the damage.  Early assessments indicate these measures have helped reduced the loss of life.

Australia's Foreign Minister Julie Bishop in Fiji prime minister Frank Bainimarama's office in 2014. Source: abc
Australia’s Foreign Minister Julie Bishop during her visit to Fiji in 2014, as Prime Minister Voreqe Bainimarama looks on. Source: ABC News.

This package will support those in greatest need, facilitating the rapid release of pre-positioned stores and food items to assist people who remain in evacuation centres or who have been displaced due to the cyclone. These stores will ensure communities have access to safe drinking water and basic hygiene for those who have lost their houses or are displaced.

Hon Bishop said Australia has offered P3 Orion aircraft to Fiji to assist with aerial surveillance of affected areas.

Hon Bishop said the aircraft is on standby in the region and she said Australia has also offered MRH-90 helicopters to assist Fiji to carry out assessments and provide relief to the outlying islands affected by the Cyclone.

We are working in partnership with the Government of Fiji and with the Fiji Red Cross Society, UN agencies and NGOs. Australia is in close cooperation with New Zealand and France through our FRANZ trilateral disaster relief arrangement. We are also working with the Pacific Island Forum members as they identify where assistance is required.

The full impact of this disaster is still not known. We stand ready to provide further assistance to support Fiji’s relief and recovery efforts.

Hon Bishop said two Australian Civilian Corp specialists are working alongside with Fij’s National Disaster Management Office.

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