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 Wednesday, 8 January, 2003, 07:10 GMT
Cyclone-hit islands start rebuilding
People walk on a beach on Anuta
Villages will need extensive repairs

Emergency officials in the Solomon Islands have said the reconstruction of two isolated communities devastated by Cyclone Zoe will take at least six months.

The country's National Disaster Council said life was slowly returning to normal after the powerful tropical storm tore through the eastern extremes of the Solomons archipelago a week and a half ago.

An aerial view of the island of Anuta
Anuta seems to have weathered the cyclone
A third relief boat has left the capital, Honiara, taking additional supplies to Tikopia and Anuta islands.

The people on these two tiny specks of land in the South Pacific are now picking up the pieces in the aftermath of the cyclone.

Some families lost everything, their homes and possessions swept away by a combination of driving rain, fierce winds and waves up to 11 metres (36 feet) high.

Remarkably, nobody was killed and it seems the communities on Tikopia and Anuta have escaped with barely a scratch.

The work to reconstruct these isolated settlements on the outer reaches of the Santa Cruz group of islands will take many months.

Dozens of homes will need to be completely rebuilt, while others require extensive repairs.

Crops will also need to be recultivated.

Water tanks and plastic piping is being sent out to ensure the supply of clean water.

Aid officials have said real progress has already been made.

Radio communications have been installed at two sites on Tikopia while the island's health clinic is back in operation and local Anglican missionaries have begun to rebuild the churches.

A third relief vessel, the Maru, has set sail from Honiara with additional supplies.

It is carrying exercise books for the island's children who expect to resume classes in the coming weeks.


Map showing Solomon Islands, including Tikopia and Anuta


Talking PointTALKING POINT
 Cyclone Zoe
Is enough being done to help the victims?
See also:

05 Jan 03 | Asia-Pacific
03 Jan 03 | Asia-Pacific
02 Jan 03 | Asia-Pacific
02 Jan 03 | Asia-Pacific
01 Jan 03 | Asia-Pacific
18 Sep 00 | Science/Nature
21 Dec 02 | Country profiles
Links to more Asia-Pacific stories are at the foot of the page.


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