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Special statement from the Community of Latin American and Caribbean States (CELAC) regarding the damages caused by the pass of hurricane IRMA in the Caribbean and The United States of America

The Community of Latin American and Caribbean States, CELAC, expresses its deep regret at the devastating consequences that Hurricane Irma has left in the territories of Antigua and Barbuda, Saint Kitts and Nevis, Dominican Republic, Haiti, Cuba, Bahamas, Saint Martin and Saint Barthélemy, Anguila, British Virgin Islands, United States Virgin Islands, Turks and Caicos Islands, Puerto Rico and the Florida Peninsula in the United States; which has caused severe flooding, destruction of infrastructure and countless material damages.

CELAC regrets the loss of human lives and conveys its sincere condolences to the families of the victims. It also extends its solidarity with the thousands of people and families affected and express its support to the efforts made by the Governments of the Member States to prevent, care and rehabilitate affected areas, particularly for the rescue of the victims.

CELAC reiterates its deep concern about the tremendous impact that the climate change has on the global warming and its consequence on the frequency and intensity of these extreme weather events. It also recalls that small Island Developing States and developing countries are particularly vulnerable and receive the greatest impacts of climate change, which compromises their efforts to achieve sustainable development.

CELAC considers that disasters of this type reveal the need to join efforts in the region to prevent and adapt to the adverse effects of climate change, as well as strengthen our cooperation in the area of Comprehensive Management of Disaster Risks and particularly the attention to vulnerabilities. It is therefore important to strengthen the multilateral actions that can be developed among the countries of the region in order to face in a successful manner, global environmental threats such as this one.

CELAC reiterates its deepest condolences to the families of the victims and its solidarity with the governments and peoples affected by the extremely serious situation caused by Hurricane Irma.

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