10 August, 2022

Four Central American presidents demand help in the face of hurricane Iota

Roads flooded after Hurricane Eta in Honduras. Photo: Courtesy Cruz Verde Salvadoreña.

By Iván Castro

MANAGUA – Central American countries accelerated emergency preparations in the face of the powerful hurricane Iota, that is expected to make landfall this Monday afternoon on the Caribbean coast of Nicaragua, and urged international support to face the disasters attributed to climate change.

Just two weeks ago, Hurricane Eta affected the region, one of the most vulnerable in the world, and caused devastation with dozens of deaths, thousands of evacuees and severe damage to homes, roads, bridges, so the leaders of four countries urged support.

Floods from Hurricane Eta. Photo: Courtesy Cruz Verde Salvadoreña.

Central America is “the region most affected the last 25 years for climate change”, said the Honduran president, Orlando hernandez, in a meeting with his Guatemalan counterpart, Alejandro Giammattei, in which his colleagues from Nicaragua participated by video conference, Daniel Ortega, and Costa Rica, Carlos Alvarado.

The presidents raised the need for international support to Dante Mossi, President of the Central American Bank for Economic Integration (BCIE), financial organization of the Central American countries that has its headquarters in Tegucigalpa.

Families who have lost everything after Hurricane Eta in Honduras.. Photo: Courtesy Cruz Verde Salvadoreña.

Mossi said that he trusted other financial organizations and friendly countries to contribute support for Central American countries to face the hurricane emergency, attend to the population affected by the phenomena and adapt to the effects of climate change, among other points.

The representative of CABEI pointed out that the presidents of the region propose access to green funds created by industrialized countries for regions affected by climate change and that it is necessary to redirect capital to the rehabilitation of infrastructure and social housing..

Families abandon their homes due to flooding caused by Hurricane Eta.
Photo: Courtesy Radio Progreso

Hernández said that the regional plan includes promoting measures to adapt to climate change, the mobilization of resources for disaster response and the subsequent rehabilitation of affected infrastructure, as well as the adaptation of social safety nets in the vulnerable region.

Meanwhile, President Giammattei of Guatemala indicated that in addition to requesting flexibility in access to green funds, the region demands cooperation and donations. Nor "we can be subject to loan after loan" and demand actions from CABEI to seek cooperation with donors.

Photo: Courtesy Radio Progreso.

President Ortega of Nicaragua pointed out that the aid is requested because the support commitments of developed countries are not specified., such as the United States and members of the European Union, what in 2016 They pledged to Central America to deliver funds in exchange for the region to fight drug trafficking to the powerful northern country, the main drug market in the world, from the leading cocaine producer in the south, Colombia, and stop the migration of Central Americans to North America.

The director for Colombia before CABEI said that his country has also suffered the attacks of the Eta and Iota phenomena, for which he requested that it be included in the benefits for reconstruction or alleviate the destructive effects of the two hurricanes.