The United Nations office in Thailand is holding its annual meeting this week, and it deserves more attention than it is getting. That is because the 69th session of Escap (Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific) will deal with regional disasters and crises.
It is ironic that the Escap meeting is receiving little attention because its core theme is that the proper way to deal with disasters is preparation.
There is no denying that official and security departments are better organised and trained for disaster response than they were even a few years ago. The 2004 tsunami exposed several sad facts about large disasters _ namely the failure of prevention, and the pain of dealing with the death, destruction and confusion left by the receding waters.
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