Kamis, 17 November 2011

ASEAN Foreign Minister Sign Document on AHA Center

ASEAN Foreign Ministers on Thursday at the Bali International Conventional Center, Nusa Dua, Bali reached an agreement as marked with the signing of a document on operation of ASEAN Humanitarian Aid center. Speaking in a press conference, Foreign Minister Marty Natalegawa said the AHA was exactly a center to help disaster-stricken people through the handling of the disaster.

The AHA Center was established through the signing of ASEAN Agreement on Disaster Management and Emergency Response (AADMER) by ASEAN foreign ministers in 2005. Then in 2007, the ASEAN foreign ministers confirmed Indonesia as the place for the AHA center and in the 2010 ASEAN Summit, the foreign ministers agreed to the operation of AHA center in 2011. The center constitutes a strategic instrument to materialize political and security, economic and socio-cultural pillars to prevail within the community of ASEAN.
In addition, the center will also be able to give more benefit to ASEAN as well as provide the right, quick and accurate information. Hence, it is also expected to become a facilitator in the distribution of humanitarian aid in the form of fund, volunteers and equipments. In principle, AHA should come up as the center of excellence in the handling of disaster in ASEAN region. Objectives of AHA center are to facilitate, coordinate and collaborate with ASEAN member countries and international organizations like the United Nations.
The implementation of AHA could be seen firstly as a center of information on disaster. Secondly it is also an agent to coordinate the mobilization of aid and thirdly is a center to coordinate the operation or joint emergency response. Fourthly it is also a center of administration coordination and fifthly is a center of research to survey disaster.
The AHA center in Indonesia has a regional function which has to do with Tsunami Early Warning System (InaTEWS), thus acting as a regional watch provider in the context of tsunami, while another function is often linked to the ASEAN Earthquake Information System. In its operation, the AHA center does not issue data by itself, but more than that it also collects and consolidate data from various resources like BMKG and BNPB. Then the center distributes the data to the disaster-handling agencies of other countries. (MC ASEAN)

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