The Socialist International is deeply saddened by the massive devastation and loss of life caused by Cyclone Idai in south-eastern Africa. According to the United Nations, the cyclone has affected more than 2 million people across Mozambique, Malawi and Zimbabwe and may be the worst ever natural disaster to strike the southern hemisphere. The humanitarian emergency resulting from the cyclone continues to worsen due to extensive flooding, which has left many stranded, without shelter or access to clean water. Aid agencies and international organisations fear that the death toll from the disaster will continue to rise.
The thoughts and solidarity of the Socialist International and of its member parties worldwide are with the people and government of Mozambique where its member party Frelimo is in office, and with the neighbouring countries affected as they seek to rebuild their cities, homes and lives and to cope with the aftermath of the human tragedy and loss of life. We call on the international community to offer all necessary aid to the governments of these countries as they seek to ensure the swift delivery of humanitarian assistance to the areas hit by this disaster, to save lives and provide shelter, access to drinking water and medical assistance.
Extreme weather events such as Cyclone Idai have in recent times become both more common and more severe, which scientists have long warned would be a consequence of changes to the climate resulting from global carbon emissions. In the majority of cases, those who are most at risk from climate change and climate-related natural disasters and who are least able to deal with their consequences, are those who have historically contributed very little to the global emissions. To redress these imbalances, the Socialist International will continue to place global climate justice at the heart of its efforts to build a sustainable world society.