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Cablegate: West Sumatra Earthquake: Sitrep 3

VZCZCXRO0012
OO RUEHDT RUEHPB
DE RUEHJA #1652 2751055
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
O 021055Z OCT 09
FM AMEMBASSY JAKARTA
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC IMMEDIATE 3462
INFO RUEHGV/USMISSION GENEVA 7959
RHHJJPI/PACOM IDHS HONOLULU HI
RUCNARF/ASEAN REGIONAL FORUM COLLECTIVE
RHEHNSC/NSC WASHDC

UNCLAS JAKARTA 001652

SIPDIS

STATE FOR EAP, CA, USAID FOR DCHA/OFDA KLUU, ACONVERY, AND RTHAYER,
ANE FOR KROSEN, BANGKOK FOR ADWYER, NSC FOR PMARCHAM, GENEVA FOR
NKYLOH, PACOM POLAD/J3/J5 FROM CHARGE OSIUS

E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: PGOV CASC ECON EAID SENV ID
SUBJECT: WEST SUMATRA EARTHQUAKE: SITREP 3

Reftel: Jakarta 01651 and previous.

1. The following information is current as of 17:00 local time.

CONDITIONS ON THE GROUND

2. Search and rescue operations continue. Road access continues to
be severely limited, with three of the four major access roads into
Padang completed closed and the fourth severely damaged. Although
the GOI has the supplies in place it has not yet been able to
deliver the basics - saline solution, antibiotics, splints, and
triage materials - to doctors and hospitals. The airport is open
although there are major delays. There are reports that the airport
will be forced to close this evening due to a lack of fuel. The
major universities have sustained severe damage. A number of
schools have collapsed and rescue operations are under way. A six
year resident Amcit who left Padang for Jakarta passport and relief
from the earthquake zone reports that there has been widespread
looting.

DEATHS AND INJURIES

3. There has been no reliable adjustment to the dead and injured
figures reported reftel. We still have not had any reports of
injured Americans.

CONSULAR MATTERS

4. The Padang team, which includes one consular officer with
Department of Justice law enforcement assistance (ICITAP) staffers,
has found no/no deceased or injured Amcits after visiting all Padang
area hospitals and morgues. We are continuing to track Amcits and
none have been in distress.

5. Satphone and email service from Padang is spotty, cell phone SMS
and voice works best. The CCD Crisis Consular Task Force database
is either slow or inoperative, Jakarta's IM staff is working on a
fix, but it makes recording Amcit data in CCD slow or impossible at
times. We are emailing our findings to CA and neighboring posts. A
second consular officer with an additional ICITAP forensic scientist
will arrive on Sat. One consular officer and at least one ICITAP
staffer will remain in Padang from Sunday to Tuesday, with emergency
funds in hand.

6. We are in regular contact with friendly country consular
officers in Jakarta and are assisting them locate their citizens
through our officers in Padang. Jakarta has seen only one Amcit
from Padang seeking a passport. He is a long term resident of
Padang and will return there later. We issued a second warden email
and SMS message that advises Amcits to contact Jakarta or our
consular officer at the Padang Hotel. We have fielded about 50
inquiries regarding Amcits. Jakarta's consular section will be open
Saturday, 8 am to 12 noon local time, to follow up with tracking
Amcits and answering inquiries, but will not be open to the public.
All other consular and visa activities continue as normal.

USG EFFORTS

7. USG efforts remain as reported reftel. We are coordinating
closely with the GOI, as well as NGOs and other governments.
Embassy's Emergency Coordinating Officers will meet Saturday morning
to assess needs.

INTERNATIONAL ASSISTANCE

8. Foreign Assistance is starting to arrive more rapidly. Most of
the assistance is cash and search and rescue personnel. In addition
to reftel reports, Singapore has sent 42 SAR personnel, Switzerland
has sent a SAR team, and China is sending money and SAR teams.

PUBLIC AFFAIRS

9. The local press has covered extensively President Obama's
statement of support for the Indonesian people. The press is also
quoting Department spokesman, Kelly announcing the release of
USD300, 000.

NEXT REPORT

10. Post will send next sitrep Saturday morning, local time.
Osius#

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