Antiguan Official Says Thousands of Haitians May Have Perished In The Bahamas

One of the two professionals dispatched to the Bahamas to assist the Caribbean Disaster Emergency Management Agency (CDEMA) with assessing the damage caused by Hurricane Dorian, has made a report to Cabinet. The video clips and the still images, which television and social media made public, did not tell the whole story. The official cited instances of seeing dead bodies on Abaco that were not a part of the official count. He agrees that thousands of people bearing Haitian nationality may have perished, but are not yet included in the death toll numbers. The official noted the exercise which Antigua undertook in 2017 to evacuate Barbuda after it was hit by Irma and with Jose threatening. That experience serves as a model for places like the Bahamas. The Antiguan experience is seen as a template which will likely be copied in the future by multi-island states. Antigua and Barbuda is also contemplating a mandatory evacuation law during these emergencies, when warranted. The Prime Minister of the Bahamas consulted with his Antiguan counterpart during the Dorian onslaught. The removal of small craft from the waterways near the port was one of the undertakings in Antigua prior to Irma. Small sunken craft that clog the channel along which cargo vessels and rescue ships travel, can be a drag on recovery. The stacking of cargo containers also requires a scientific approach in order to lower the work which has to be done after the storm has passed. Up to ten Antigua and Barbuda police professionals will leave for the Bahamas in a few days. Dominica and Grenada have agreed to dispatch an equal number to that hurricane ravaged country.

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