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KINGSTON – The Senate, last week, extended condolences and sympathies to the Government and people Japan, in the wake of the loss of lives and infrastructural damage sustained as a result of the March 11 earthquake and tsunami.

The 8.9-magnitude quake, which predominantly impacted Japan’s northeast region, unleashed a 23-foot (seven-meter) tsunami and more than 50 aftershocks, mostly with 6.0 magnitude, which resulted in more than 11,000 confirmed deaths, upwards of 2,700 injuries and more than 16,000 persons reported missing.

Leader of Government Business, Senator Hon. Dorothy Lightbourne, in conveying her compassion, hailed the Japanese resolve to deal with and overcome the challenges. 

“I don’t know if it’s their culture, but there’s no complaint; it’s as if they accept what there is and they are dealing with it and they are moving on. They are not grumbling or begging; they are not even begging for help; it’s as if (they are saying) ‘you want to help, you come’. But they are dealing with it themselves and,…our prayers go out to them and (we should) just keep on praying with them…that with God’s will and grace, they will overcome,” she stated.

Opposition Senator, Navel Clarke, said the disaster rippled shock waves globally. “We could not imagine the size of an earthquake, that magnitude, that really devastated all of those places within Japan, and the aftershock that occurred several times after,” he said, while lamenting the subsequent radiation exposure consequent on the damage to nuclear reactors.

“Our sentiments and expressions must be with them and sympathies to all of the persons in that region, and in Japan in particular. May God bless them to get over what they have (experienced),” he said.

Senate President, Hon. Oswald Harding, in endorsing the sentiments, expressed the hope that “the hand that creates will also be the hand that restores”.

He directed the Clerk to the Upper House to convey the sentiments of the members and the wider nation to the Japanese Parliament.

 

By DOUGLAS McINTOSH, JIS Reporter