China

China: Floods - Information Bulletin n° 1

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(Glide No. FL-2007-000077-CHN)

The Federation's mission is to improve the lives of vulnerable people by mobilizing the power of humanity. It is the world's largest humanitarian organization and its millions of volunteers are active in over 185 countries.

In Brief

This Information Bulletin is being issued for information only.

Southern China has been hit by incessant rains since Wednesday, causing severe flooding in Hunan, Guangdong, Guangxi, Guizhou, Jiangxi and Fujian provinces. The flooding and resulting landslides have caused 66 deaths and affected nearly 9 million, with some 600,000 having been forced to evacuate their homes. The Red Cross Society of China have been actively involved in distributing relief supplies to those affected.

The Federation is seeking funding through the China 2007 annual appeal (MAACN001) to support the Red Cross Society of China's disaster management programme.

The Situation

Torrential rains that have plagued southern China since Wednesday have resulted in 66 people dead and 12 missing by Sunday. Incessant rains which hit Hunan, Guangdong, Guangxi, Guizhou, Jiangxi and Fujian provinces, resulted in mudslides and floods which affected more than 8.97 million people. According to the ministry of civil affairs, floods caused by heavy rains have affected about 294,800 hectares of crops, with some 53,000 hectares being completely destroyed. The floods have torn down 48,000 houses and damaged another 94,000 along the flood zones. About 591,000 have been forced to evacuate their homes.

Overall, it is estimated that the disaster has caused an economic loss of more than CNY 2.9 billion (USD 371 million).

Following severe drought in areas of Southwest China's Sichuan province, experts were warning of possible flooding along the Yangtze River. On Friday, Sichuan province reported seven deaths and nine injuries in Liangshan autonomous prefecture of the Yi nationality. Continuous rainfall on Wednesday and Thursday brought hailstorms, lightning strikes and landslides. Rainstorms also hit central Hunan province from Wednesday night through Thursday, leaving three people dead, one missing and 158,000 homeless. Initial assessments reports Zijin County, of Guangdong province, as being hit by the worst flooding in 50 years.

All International Federation assistance seeks to adhere to the Code of Conduct for the International Red Cross and Red Crescent Movement and Non-Governmental Organizations (NGO's) in Disaster Relief and is committed to the Humanitarian Charter and Minimum Standards in Disaster Response (Sphere) in delivering assistance to the most vulnerable.

The Federation's Global Agenda The International Federation's activities are aligned with under a Global Agenda, which sets out four broad goals to meet the Federation's mission to "improve the lives of vulnerable people by mobilizing the power of humanity".

Global Agenda Goals:

- Reduce the numbers of deaths, injuries and impact from disasters.

- Reduce the number of deaths, illnesses and impact from diseases and public health emergencies.

- Increase local community, civil society and Red Cross Red Crescent capacity to address the most urgent situations of vulnerability.

- Reduce intolerance, discrimination and social exclusion and promote respect for diversity and human dignity.

For further information specifically related to this operation please contact:

Red Cross Society of China: Wang Xiaohua (director of external relations department); email: rcsc@chineseredcross.org; phone: +86.10.6404.8366, fax +86.10.6402.9928.

Federation East Asia regional delegation in China: Alistair Henley (head of regional delegation); alistair.henley@ifrc.org; phone: +86.10.6532.7162, fax: +86.10.6532.7166.

Federation Secretariat in Geneva (Asia Pacific department): Ewa Eriksson (regional officer); email: ewa.eriksson@ifrc.org; phone: +41.22.730.4252; fax: +41.22.733.0395; or Sandra Rosner (senior assistant); email: sandra.rosner@ifrc.org; phone: +41.22.730.4456; fax: +41.22.733.0395