Serious floods affect nearly 70,000 people
A crew from Télécoms Sans Frontières on site
Mozambique — February 15, 2007
Following the heavy floods which have been affecting the regions of Tete, Manica, Sofala and Zambezia for several weeks, the situation in Mozambique has deteriorated significantly over the past 2 days. According to a recent report from the National Institute for Disaster Management (INGC), 68 500 people are affected.
An emergency crew from Télécoms Sans Frontières (TSF) was sent to assess the needs in emergency telecommunications for the humanitarian community and affected civilians. TSF’s landed Thursday morning in the capital Maputo in order to be deployed in the affected areas at the soonest. According to a report from the Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) published on February 12th, 26 800 people are sheltered across 53 accommodation centres. If the situation was to deteriorate even further, INGC estimates that up 300 000 civilians could be displaced. The Government of Mozambique is still considering the need to appeal for international assistance.
TSF’s emergency crew is carrying satellite equipment such as Inmarsat BGan and RBgan terminals and Thrane & Thrane Mini M and IT equipment to install if needed, one or several telecom centres with broadband Internet connections and phone and fax lines. TSF could also run humanitarian calling operations.
With its 24-hour monitoring centre and relying on its operational bases in France, Nicaragua and in Thailand, Télécoms Sans Frontières (TSF) crews of IT and telecoms specialists can intervene anywhere in the world in less than 24 hours after any sudden onset disaster or conflict and in a matter of minutes set up a satellite-based telecoms centre offering broadband Internet, phone and fax lines. These centres enable emergency NGO, the United Nations and local authorities to communicate right at the heart of event. They also facilitate the coordination of aid efforts. In parallel, TSF also runs humanitarian calling operation to offer support and assistance to affected civilians, giving them a link with the outside world from which they would be otherwise completely cut off.
Since its creation in 1998, TSF deployed to nearly 50 countries and assisted more than 350 relief organisations. In 2006, TSF became a partner of the United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) and the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF). TSF is First Responder of the Emergency Telecommunications Cluster (ETC).
Télécoms Sans Frontières is also a working group member of the United Nations emergency telecoms body (WGET). TSF is a partner of the Humanitarian Aid Department of the European Commission (ECHO) and a member of the International Council of Voluntary Agencies (ICVA).
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