Death toll of Papua New Guinea quake rises

Death toll of Papua New Guinea quake rises

Kerry Wise
March 6, 2018

"Many places that have been struck are still inaccessible, except by walking in, so there is a huge supply issue in delivering aid", Udaya Regmi, the country head of the Red Cross, told the Guardian. Relief workers have been unable to get bigger trucks carrying food through to some areas because of damage to roads by landslides. "Ensuring those affected are safe and healthy with access to clean water, food and safe spaces is the number one priority".

"As outlined by the Minister for Foreign Affairs last week, New Zealand is committed to the Pacific and we see our relationship with Papua New Guinea as a vital piece of our work in the region". The 7.5 natural disaster rocked the highlands region early February 26, triggering vast aftershocks including a 6.0 magnitude quake Monday.

"The rugged terrain and loss of communications in the area impacted means it is taking time to build a complete picture of the damage but we know that tens of thousands of people are reported as requiring humanitarian assistance", Peters said.

Aftershocks terrified villagers for five days after the initial temblor and only started subsiding on Saturday, multiple sources said. "They think the end of the world is happening".

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ExxonMobil Corp said on Monday it would take about eight weeks to restore production at the Papua New Guinea liquified natural gas project (LNG), following a powerful quake that hit the country's energy-rich interior a week ago.

Relief efforts are slowly being ramped up, with millions of dollars in aid pledged by the government, ExxonMobil and Australian energy producers.

Santos is providing $200,000, ExxonMobil $US1 million ($1.3 million) and Oil Search $US5 million.