Information und Analyse

Situation in Aceh on December 29th, 2004, according to information provided by the environmental organisation WALHI

December 29, 2004

The telecommunication system in Aceh has been down over the last days. Since this afternoon it is once more possible to obtain news directly from Aceh by phone.

WALHI Aceh has lost its director, Mohammad Ibrahim. We are mourning his death.

Only one of the 34 WALHI groups in Aceh could be contacted so far (YBA, Yayasan Biduk Alam in East Aceh).

For two days now, an Indonesian team from the Civil Society Coalition for the Victims of the Earthquake and Tsunami (consisting of WALHI, the human rights organisation KontraS, Acehkita and the Aceh Working Group) has been on its way to Aceh. Also North Sumatra has suffered terrible destruction and the team faces a difficult task. While in other states hit by the effects of the earthquake and the tsunami wave national and international aid is reaching the affected areas, the Acehnese are still left on their own. Just now the team reports (7:30 pm local time, 1:30 pm MET) via SMS text message: “We are in North Sumatra, not yet in Aceh. We are waiting in front of a destroyed bridge that shall be fixed now. We hope to reach Aceh tonight.”

Contact with co-workers of the Civil Society Coalition in Aceh: 0062-651-33619

On the situation in individual cities:

The highest number of casualties are reported from Meulaboh, the provincial capital Banda Aceh, from Idi, Tanah Pasir, Gedong, Kandang, Lhokseumawe, Krung Mane (all houses have been destroyed here), Kuta Blang, Bireuen, Pedada, Pante Raja, Kumbang Tanjong, Sigli, Pasi Rawa (entirely destroyed). Coastal towns are often entirely destroyed. The streets of Banda Aceh are littered with dead bodies. The population is in dire need of blankets, tents, body bags, food, cooking material, baby food and milk.

Meulaboh at the West coast:
The situation in Meulaboh is devastating: 80% of the city and the surrounding areas are said to be destroyed. According to latest reports it is estimated that only 9,000 of the 45,000 inhabitants are still alive. Aid teams have not yet arrived. According to reports from the city, dead bodies are lying everywhere. They have not yet been buried.

Contact with NGOs in West Aceh: 0062-658-21219

Lhokseumawe (according to information obtained via phone at 5:30 pm local time (11:30 am MET):
Lhokseumawe, the industrial town at the East coast (gas production by ExxonMobil), is reportedly not as badly hit as the capital Banda Aceh or the West coast. The tsunami reached the city and thousands fled in panic to higher regions and tried to find shelter in mosques and public buildings. The death toll here stands at 146. Yesterday, the water level in the city was still at five meters.

Nias: On December 29th, 4 pm local time (10 am MET), 84 dead and 180 missing are reported from the island Nias. Many houses, churches, schools, public buildings, mosques and roads are destroyed.
The foundation Ecosystem Leuser (Yayasan Ekosistem Leuser, YEL) is collecting money: Account No.: 027.01.18531.00.3, Bank Niaga Cabang Gajah Mada Medan, purpose: „Bencana alam”

Krung Mane: The death toll in Krung Mane where all houses have been destroyed is reported to be 200.

According to new information about the situation on the island Simeulue, the situation there seems to be devastating as well. The Navy Chief of Staff Adm. Bernard Kent Sondakh is quoted in the Jakarta Post as saying: “We have also prepared more humanitarian aid to help victims in Simeulue Island, which has been swamped by the tidal waves that killed at least 7,000 people.” Other information is currently not available to us.

Jakarta, December 28, 2004

Statement by Civil Society Coalition for the Victims of the Earthquake and Tsunami

Walhi, Aceh Kita, Kontras, AWG- Aceh Working Group

Tectonic earthquake followed by tsunami that swept through Aceh and North Sumatera is the greatest disaster hit Indonesia for the last decade. Recently, Aceh is still in paralyzed condition. The electricity and telephones break down caused difficulty to access information to the impacted areas. According to the latest information, the death toll is 4,712 and that will likely increase, since the following quake predicted happens in the recent period, moreover the threat of diseases after the disaster. This catastrophe is a National disaster, which involved millions people’s life suffered due to lack of facilities to survive.

With regard to the National Calamity and on behalf of humanism, we, the Civil Society Coalition for the Victims of Earthquake and Tsunami or Koalisi Masyarakat Sipil untuk Korban Gempa dan Tsunami, want to express our deepest condolences and sympathy for the victims of the calamity. As our solidarity and support for them, we, the Civil Society Coalition for the victims of The Earthquake and tsunami in Aceh and North Sumatera, hold a consolidation to intervene direct and immediate aid, in short and long term period, in the form of:

1. Conducting direct field surveys to assess the exact condition and needs; to open crisis center that can be accessed by many organizations and institutions and persons who want to give donation such as: kafan material – material used to cover dead body – funds, medicines, clothes and other stuff needed; to guarantee the aid’s effectiveness and coordinattion, and that the aid truly delivered for those who needs.

Our crisis center is pooled in Medan, North Sumatera:
ED WALHI Sumatera Utara
Jl. Air Bersih No.79 Medan, Sumatera Utara
Contact person: Herwin Nasution; mobile: 0811657517
Office phone: 061-7869061/77804071
Fax: 061-7869061
Email: walhisu@indosat.net.id
Donation to : Account number 006.0015.9697.001
Bank BNI Cabang Jl. Pemuda Medan
An. Wahana Lingkungan Hidup Sumatera Utara

Our crisis center in Jakarta, opened in three locations:
Eksekutif Nasional WALHI
Jl. Tegal Parang Utara No.14
Mampang Prapatan Jakarta Selatan
79193363, 08159448017, 08154036028
Donation to: Account Number 039.01.01825.009,
Bank Niaga KCP. Jakarta Design Centre/ JDC
An. Wahana Lingkungan Hidup Indonesia (KESLING)

Kontras
Jl. Borubudur No 14 Menteng Jakarta pusat
Contact: mobiles: 0811812149, 08129437339
Donation to: Account number 2-072-267-196,
Bank BII Cabang Proklamasi
An. Kontras

Aceh kita
Jl. Bojonegoro No 16 Menteng Jakarta Pusat
contact: mobiles: 081511222551, 0818944726
Donation to : Account number 0206-01-017649-50-8,
Bank BRI KCK Sudirman Jakarta
An.Teuku Zulkarnaen dan Ahmad Mauladi

Aceh Working Group (AWG)
Jl. Diponegoro No.9 Menteng Jakarta Pusat
Contact: mobile: 0811177982

b. Providing support on Government initiative to open access as wide as possible to every kind of support to the victims.

c. Urging government to inform public complete information on accessible crisis centers, and to ensure all logistic support and humanitarian aid chanelled by government, distributed well to victims.

d. Calling for public to be a watchdog for government logistic supplies and humanitarian aid in order that all support will reach and be benefited by the victims. This is important, with regard to the repeated corruption cases of humanitarian aid due to misconduct of government officials.

e. Ensuring that a recovery system and rescue operation for devastated areas will be planed well, supported by sufficient resources and managed transparently and accountably.

The crisis center will coordinate with local organizations in regions, e.g: Dompet Dhuafa. All information will be given through WALHI’s website www.walhi.or.id

Our joint statement serves also as a call for all stakeholders to build solidarity and to share for Acehnese and North Sumatranese, victims of Earthquake and Tsunami.

Telephone: (021) 7941472
Faximile: (021) 7941673
e-mail: info@walhi.or.id
website: www.walhi.or.id

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