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Abe Seeks to Put Top Priority on Saving Lives after Typhoon

Abe Seeks to Put Top Priority on Saving Lives after Typhoon

   Tokyo, Oct. 13 (Jiji Press)--Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe on Sunday urged government staff to focus on search and rescue operations after the country was struck by powerful Typhoon Hagibis.
   At the first meeting of the government's emergency disaster response headquarters set up the same day, Abe said: "First of all, we must put top priority on saving lives. I want you to do your best to rescue people stranded at flooded houses and search for missing people."
   At the meeting, held at the prime minister's office, participants confirmed a seven-point policy, including gathering information swiftly, putting foremost priority on life-saving and preventing damage from expanding.
   The government formed an emergency disaster response headquarters for the first time since last year's torrential rains that hit western Japan areas. The Abe government was criticized by opposition parties and others for not setting up such a headquarters when Typhoon Faxai caused heavy damage last month, such as extensive power outages mainly in Chiba Prefecture, eastern Japan.
   At Sunday's meeting, it was reported that more than 110,000 people, including police officers, firefighters and Self-Defense Forces troops, are engaged in search and rescue operations. Abe instructed participants to boost efforts to rescue and support affected people, and restore damaged infrastructure, such as power and water supplies, as early as possible. He also called for ensuring that water, food, makeshift beds and other relief supplies will be delivered to shelters.

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AFP-JIJI PRESS NEWS JOURNAL


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