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Asian Tribune is published by World Institute For Asian Studies|Powered by WIAS Vol. 12 No. 2730

President Clinton Calls for Global Commitment to Disaster Reduction

New York 11 October, (Asiantribune.com): Former US President Bill Clinton appealed for a renewed worldwide commitment to disaster reduction and prevention measures. "The most profound lesson from the 2004 tsunami may be the need for a renewed worldwide commitment to disaster reduction and prevention measures."President Bill Clinton said "Only four percent of the $10 billion spent annually in humanitarian assistance is spent on prevention." President Bill Clinton said "Only four percent of the $10 billion spent annually in humanitarian assistance is spent on prevention."

President Clinton said "Only four percent of the $10 billion spent annually in humanitarian assistance is spent on prevention."

On the eve of the 17th annual International Day for Disaster Reduction, President Bill Clinton, the UN Secretary General’s Special Envoy for Tsunami Recovery, called for a transformation in international disaster assistance from donors to ensure generous support for disaster prevention.

In remarks to the United Nations Association of the United States (UNA-USA), President Clinton stressed the importance of risk reduction in the tsunami recovery process, and in international development efforts worldwide – including strong building codes that enable structures to withstand earthquakes and tidal waves, early warning systems, and public education.

President Clinton welcomed progress that has been made in the development of the basic technical elements of an Indian Ocean Tsunami Early Warning System in the tsunami affected region. But he emphasized that further critical work still needs to be done, in particular to ensure that national systems are in place and that governments address the 'last mile' of the warning systems to ensure that all the coastal communities are educated on the signs of natural hazards.

President Clinton offered his remarks after receiving UNA-USA’s Global Leadership Award, for his vision in creating the Clinton Global Initiative (CGI), as well as his efforts on behalf of tsunami recovery. The UN Secretary-General appointed President Clinton as his Special Envoy for Tsunami Recovery in February 2005.

Since then, he has sought to keep the world's attention focused on the tsunami operations; support coordination efforts at the country and global levels; promote transparency and accountability measures; and champion a new kind of recovery that sets communities on a better and safer development path. Previous recipients of the award include Colin Powell, Yitzhak Rabin, Bill and Melinda Gates, the Rockefeller Family, James Wolfensohn, Michael Bloomberg, Henry McKinnell, Pete Peterson, Joan Ganz Cooney and Leonore Annenberg.

- Asian Tribune -

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