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Pakistani civil Society expresses solidarity with Quake-hit Japanese

16 March 2011

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PRESS RELEASE

Pakistani civil Society expresses solidarity with Quake-hit Japanese

KARACHI/ISLAMABAD,

March 16 [2011]: Civil society organizations of Pakistan have expressed deep sorrow and grief over the loss of thousands of human lives and billions of dollars properties in Japan due to the devastating Sendai earthquake which hit the northeast coast of Honshu, Japan on Friday, March 11, with intensity of 8.9 at Richter Scale, triggering 10-meter high
tsunami.

In a statement issued here, a group of civil society organizations that include PILER, PFF, SAP-PK, SPO, SAFCOW, CPCS and SUNGI, expressed solidarity with the people Japan in their difficult time and hoped the Japanese nation with the support from international community would recuperate from this one of the largest human miseries in the history.

As reported in the media, the earthquake was the fifth largest in intensity as recorded in the human history, caused around 10,000 deaths and missing of thousands of people along with loss of billions of dollars properties. News reports indicate that the earthquake has shifted the earth’s axis by 6.5 inches, shortened the day by 1.6 microseconds, and sank Japan downward by about two feet.

The civil society stated that this is the biggest human tragedy on earth and the patience and unity demonstrated by people of Japan at the time of such overwhelming natural calamity is an archetypical and every nation
should learn from forbearance attitude of Japanese in such difficult times.

It is worth recalling that when the northern parts of Pakistan including Pakistan-administered Kashmir and Khyber Pukhtoonkhwa province had faced such natural calamity when 7.6 magnitude earthquake hit these areas on October 8, 2005 and caused heavy losses of human lives and properties, the international community, particularly Japanese government provided huge assistance in relief and rehabilitation.

Civil society also emphasized that there are lessons to learn from Japan’s tragedy. Firstly, Japanese society’s disaster preparedness and earthquake resistant infrastructure has played a role in minimizing the damage caused by the high-intensity earthquake. Secondly, the nuclear catastrophe indicates dangers associated with nuclear technology that spells grave consequences for countries adopting the systems. The three explosions in the power generating nuclear reactors are the main cause of worries for the world and there is fear of spread of radiation.

This also invites our attention that use of nuclear even for peaceful purposes like power generation is very dangerous and counterproductive. The elements of nature have again demonstrated to us just how powerful and destructive they can be despite our scientific knowledge and advancement.

The Civil Society hoped that Japanese government would be able to make efforts to reduce the level of radiation discharge and also provide every possible assistance to the affected population.

Names of organizations:

1. Pakistan Institute of Labour Education and Research - PILER (piler at cyber.net.pk)

2. Pakistan Fisher Folk Forum - PFF (pakistanfisherfolk at hotmail.com)

3. South Asia Partnership Pakistan SAP-PK (info at sappk.org)

4. Strengthening Participatory Organization - SPO (info at spo.pk.org)

5. Sindh Agricultural and Forestry Workers Coordinating Organization - SAFWCO (info at sfwco.org, suleman.abro at safwco.org)

6. Centre for PEACE and Civil Society - CPCS (jchandio at cpcs.org.pk)

7. SUNGI Development Foundation - (sungu at sungi.org.pk)

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