Papua New Guinea Landslide Tragedy: No Survivors Expected

Papua New Guinea Landslide Tragedy: No Survivors Expected

Sawako Uchida and Michiyo Tanabe

Modern Tokyo Times

The Tragic landslide that hit a remote village in Papua New Guinea is now witnessing a mission to find dead bodies. Accordingly, the hope of finding survivors is now deemed hopeless.

Even now, the final death toll from this horrendous landslide that hit the village of Kaokalam isn’t known. Hence, huge variations from 160 dead to possibly 2,000 deaths have been mentioned by various sources.

Rescue missions remain hampered by the remoteness of the region, the precarious mountain terrain, tribal clashes, and the limited infrastructure (main road and bridge) being damaged.

CNN reports, “Papua New Guinea is home to around 10 million people. Its vast mountainous terrain and lack of roads have made it difficult to access the affected area.”

Reuters reports, More than 2,000 people may have been buried alive, according to the PNG government, but a UN estimate put the death toll at about 670, while a local businessman and former official told Reuters it was closer to 160.”

Sandis Tsaka (the Provincial Administrator of the province of Enga) said, “No bodies are expected to be alive under the debris at this point, so it’s a full recovery operation to recover any human remains.”

Prime Minister James Marape of Papua New Guinea said, “This year, we had extraordinary rainfall that has caused flooding in river areas, sea level rise in coastal areas and landslips in a few areas.” 

Marape continued, “We have faced extraordinary weather patterns and changes from dryness to wetness.”

Sorrow and hopelessness abound in the area hit by the landslide.

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