New Delhi: India on Tuesday announced 200,000 US dollars relief assistance to Tonga in the wake of Tsunami that erupted due to underwater volcanic eruption that rocked the Kingdom earlier this month.
"India extends deep sympathy to the Government and the people of the Kingdom of Tonga for the damage and destruction caused by this unprecedented disaster", Ministry of External Affairs said in a statement.
"As a close friend and partner under the Forum for India-Pacific Islands Cooperation (FIPIC) and as a gesture of solidarity with the friendly people of Tonga, Government of India extends an immediate relief assistance of US$ 200,000 to support relief, rehabilitation and reconstruction efforts in the Kingdom of Tonga", the statement added.
"India has firmly stood by Tonga during times of crisis and devastation caused by natural disasters, as during Cyclone Gita in 2018. Disaster Risk Reduction and Management is an important pillar of India’s Indo-Pacific Oceans’ Initiative (IPOI) announced by Prime Minister Narendra Modi in November 2019", it said.
Tsunami waves hit Tonga on January 15. The tsunami followed a series of violent eruptions from underwater Hunga Tonga-Hunga Ha'apai volcano, 65 km north of the country's main island Tongatapu.
Earlier, New Zealand assisted Tonga in its recovery from the massive undersea volcanic eruption and tsunami that occurred on January 15.
The New Zealand government has also allocated a further NZ$500,000 in humanitarian assistance, taking its initial funding total to NZ$1 million.