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Thursday 27th April
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On 26 December 2003, the day following Christmas Day, an earthquake in Iran devastated the area around the city of Bam (6.5 on the Richter scale). It is estimated that over 40,000 people lost their lives in one of the worst natural disasters during the last decade. Exactly one year later, on 26 December 2004, a quake occurred under the sea near Aceh in north Indonesia (8.9 on the Richter scale); this produced tsunamis causing flooding and destruction in Bangladesh, India, Indonesia, Malaysia, Maldives, Myanmar, Thailand, Seychelles, Sri Lanka and the east coast of Africa (Kenya and Somalia). The death toll is around 150,000 - 1 January 2005. ... Re-estimated at more than 225,000 on 18 January.

Posting from Marsha, Israel (27 December 2004)

So many innocent people were killed in Sri Lanka, Thailand, Malaysia, Bangaladesh, India, Indonesia and the Maldives. We are sad today and mourn all the people who perished in this horrible tragedy.

John Wu, China (27 December 2004)

The huge tidal waves swept ashore and killed many people in Asian countries. Such a disaster was told would happen once in a century.

Student, Siberia, Russia (27 December 2004)

We feel very sorry about the unexpected tragedy. How it was able to happen without any warning and predictions?

Teacher, UK (27 December 2004)

I am amazed that no one was able to give warnings of the tsunami. It just goes to show how unprepared and insignificant we are in the face of natural disasters.

Teacher, Hungary (27 December 2004)

I was terribly shocked when I saw the reports on TV today. Here, in Hungary we are so far from that place, but I feel great empathy with the people who suffer from the tidal wave disaster.

Student from Croatia (28 December 2004)

This time modern technology has failed to inform people of the region to protect themselves from tsunami waves. How is it possible today? How many weather forecast satellites are there in the Earth's orbite? Japan has got special instruments for earthquakes. All those countries had to be informed and people would move from the ocean shores and find shelters. Tsunami travels at about 500 -700 km per hour. In my opinion, many people could be informed by radio, TV, via mobile phones.

Teacher from Texas, USA (29 December 2004)

As emergency forces work to meet the most urgent needs, the rest of us should wait, with ears open. The people closest to the tragedy and the special teams sent to help them, will tell us where the greatest needs are.

Email from Sri Lanka (29 December 2004)

We, the HorizonLanka team in Anuradhapura, would like to help our countrymen who are lamenting in this tragic moment. Our Internet café has launched a helpline and we will render our services for the family members who desperately want to get details of their beloved ones. HorizonLanka Cybercity Internet Café, New Bus stand, Anuradhapura.

Email from Horizon School, Sri Lanka (29 December 2004)

We are ok but some of the students loved ones who worked in coastal areas are missing.

Posting from pupils in Israel (29 December 2004)

We are sorry for the people who had relatives that were in the disaster. We know that now there are more then 90,000 dead people, and it is estimated it will be 100,000 dead people soon.

Email from Bangladesh (31 December 2004)

... two people have been killed and a minor level of damage occurred in the coastal areas. Sri Lanka, not far away from Bangladesh, has been more badly affected. We are sending an advance Team on Sunday to assess relief needs and medical support and also reconstruction requirements. This team visit will be followed by material support for these helpless people. ... Can you send me any contact details of the school or the people you know in Sri Lanka? I will forward it to my colleagues who are travelling to Sri Lanka on Sunday.

Ideas for Fundraising - Canadian Teacher (4 January 2005)

My school is in the process of deciding what type of fundraiser we could do to raise money to help those suffering from the disaster in Southern Asian countries. I was wondering what types of projects or fundraisers other classes or schools might be doing to support this effort? We hope to raise money and educate the students about the countries affected. Please share any good ideas ...

The Head Teacher of Horizon School - Sri Lanka (4 January 2005)

Two HorizonLanka teachers have been helping the tsunami victims for the past few days in affected areas. ... One of our boys who had been holidaying in a coastal village had a narrow escape ... He is still shocked.

Posting from Palestine - Nature vs Us (4 January 05)

I am afraid mother nature does not understand reconciliation and just strikes all people ... but it is a lesson to all of us, that we all are human and no difference between poor and rich, black and white, men or women. I am sorry for those who lost their lives and homes and beloved.

Posting from Sri Lanka (5 January 05)

We, Sri Lankans had to face a big problem, Tsunami. We didn’t have new technology to know about it before it happened. So we had to face it. ... Now we have to rebuild our country. As well we have to develop our science knowledge.

Photos from the Bam earthquake were sent to WIZ by a photographer in Iran. Visit the Iran Gallery to see photos of Bam.

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