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Praia Nova, Beira. Photo: Lusa
The Portuguese Red Cross (CVP) said it has hundreds of long-term food items in the institution’s warehouses throughout Portugal destined to the city of Beira in Mozambique which was hit by Cyclone Idai, awaiting a special aircraft for this purpose.
In a statement to Lusa, the head of the Portuguese Red Cross, Francisco George, said that a national alert was issued for long-term (canned) food reserves to be collected in case a humanitarian flight to Mozambique was organised.
With heavy rains and winds of up to 170km/h, the storm reached Beira, the fourth largest city in Mozambique on Thursday night, leaving approximately 500,000 residents without power and communication lines.
George told Lusa that the Portuguese Red Cross has opened a solidarity account with €5,000 (from a CVP emergency fund), and the Portuguese people can contribute.
“I appeal to all Portuguese to transfer the amounts they want.
They can donate through an ATM, in payments and services, with the entity 20999 and reference 999 999 999,” he said.
George also said that the Portuguese Red Cross has already sent to Mozambique a specialist in families ties to participate in operations with modern equipment, via satellite, to support authorities to join families.
He added that “at the moment,” the important this is to get water, food and medicine to the victims.
The passage of Cyclone Idai across Mozambique, Malawi and Zimbabwe killed at least 222 people, according to provisional reports released by their respective governments on Monday.
More than 1.5 million people were affected by the storm in those three African countries.
“According to the information given to us here… we already have more than 200 dead, and nearly 350,000 people are at risk,”said President Nyusi yesterday after attending a cabinet meeting in the storm-stricken central city of Beira.
The confirmed death toll stood at 202, he said, adding that the government had declared a national emergency as well as three days of national mourning starting on Wednesday.
“We are in an extremely difficult situation,” Nyusi said, adding that flood waters were expected to rise to around eight metres (26 feet) in the coming days.
On Monday, Portugal’s president, Marcelo Rebelo De Sousa reported that “so far there is no record of Portuguese citizens having been killed, injured or in danger,” but “several dozen people have lost homes and possessions.”Source: Lusa