Natural disasters: rich countries also pay their toll

United Nations Office for Disaster Risk Reduction

“The tragic series of natural hazards that has recently hit Japan reminds us that all countries, rich or poor, are subject to increasing threats from social vulnerability and natural hazards,” said Salvano Briceño, Director of ISDR, the UN secretariat in Geneva that focuses on disaster reduction. Japan suffered a record 10 landed typhoons this year killing some 220 people. Super-typhoon ‘Tokage’ that struck the country last week was the worst event so far this year: it caused at least 80 deaths and 377 injuries in addition to extensive damage to property. During the past weekend, a series of strong earthquakes killed 31 people in Niigata Prefecture, 250 km northwest of Tokyo.

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