South Asian earthquake:Relief effort saves lives, stems losses, but reconstruction tasks loom large [Archives:2007/1021/Last Page]

February 1 2007

“Ten Stories the World Should Hear More About”

In 2004, the United Nations Department of Public Information (DPI) launched an initiative called “Ten Stories the World Should Hear More About” to draw attention to important international developments and issues that fall outside the media spotlight. The list includes stories on an array of issues and from several geographical regions. Some of the stories on the list focus on troubling humanitarian emergencies and conflict situations, but they also highlight such vital areas as human rights, health and development. Every issue, we will bring a new story to you, hoping that our little effort to advocate for human rights all over the world would make a difference, some how, some way he editor

In the wake of a successful relief effort that helped to prevent additional casualties in quake-devastated areas, the aid community is facing a new crucial task of restoring livelihoods to hundreds of thousands of people left homeless and destitute by the disaster.

The Story

On 8 October 2005, a devastating earthquake struck South Asia killing tens of thousands and leaving many more homeless and in danger as a bitter winter approached. An intensive effort to find, rescue and feed survivors was closely followed by the media around the world due to the sheer scale of the disaster – 73,000 people perishing in Pakistan and 1,300 in India, a crisis that UN Emergency Coordinator Jan Egeland characterized as the “worst logistical nightmare”” the world body had faced. Despite the challenges