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UN Sends Team: Cyclone Percy Hammers South Pacific

UN Sends Teams To Assess Needs After Cyclone Percy Hammers South Pacific Islands

With Tropical Cyclone Percy having sown widespread destruction on the atolls and islands of the South Pacific, the United Nations is sending emergency teams to Tokelau and the Cook Islands to assess damage and humanitarian needs, the UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) said today.

Tokelau comprises three sparsely populated atolls half-way between Hawaii and New Zealand. The cyclone caused widespread damage to all three: Atafu, with a population of more than 500; Nukunonu, with a population of nearly 450; and Fakaofo, with a population of 500.

In the Cook Islands, which already had experienced Tropical Cyclones Meena, Nancy and Olaf, OCHA said, only 10 houses remained intact on Pukapuka, with 600 residents. All the houses belonging to the 70 people on Nassau Island were severely damaged or destroyed.

Percy was now heading towards Palmerston Atoll and its 50 inhabitants, according to the Australian-Pacific Centre for Emergency and Disaster Information (APCEDI), OCHA said.

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