United States Offers Condolences to Those Affected by Tropical Cyclone Pam

Posted by DipNote Bloggers
March 16, 2015
Young Boy and His Father Sort Through the Ruins of Their Home in the Aftermath of Cyclone Pam

The United States extends sympathies to those who have been affected by Cyclone Pam.  State Department Spokesperson Jen Psaki said:

"...We offer condolences to the people of Vanuatu, Tuvalu, Solomon Islands, and Kiribati as they cope with the devastating impact of Cyclone Pam. Our thoughts and prayers are with the victims and loved ones. In the wake of Cyclone Pam, the United States Government immediately issued disaster declarations from Embassies Port Moresby and Suva, and we are working with the NGO -- with our NGO partners and other nations on the most effective ways to deliver our relief assistance. An OFDA disaster relief team will assess conditions in the areas and work with partners on the ground. The first team members arrived Monday -- today, Monday, March 16th."

USAID's OFDA -- the Office of U.S. Foreign Disaster Assistance -- is responsible for leading and coordinating the U.S. Government’s response to disasters overseas.  OFDA responds to an average of 70 disasters in 56 countries every year to ensure aid reaches people affected by rapid on-set disasters -- such as earthquakes, volcanoes, and floods -- and slow-onset crises, including drought and conflict.
Information for U.S. citizens traveling to or residing in Vanuatu, Tuvalu, Solomon Islands, and Kiribati can be found online at travel.state.gov.  We highly encourage U.S. citizens traveling or residing abroad to enroll in the Department of State’s Smart Traveler Enrollment Program (STEP).  STEP enrollment gives you the latest security updates and makes it easier for U.S. Embassy personnel to contact you in the case of an emergency.  U.S. citizens can also call 1-888-407-4747 toll-free in the United States and Canada or 1-202-501-4444 from other countries.
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