More than 300 participants from 147 institutions of 23 countries across the world are taking part in the exercise
A joint venture between Bangladesh Armed Forces and the US Army began to practice the post-earthquake searching and rescuing technique from Tuesday to Thursday.
More than 300 representatives of 147 organizations from 23 countries are participating in this earthquake disaster management program which has been held in Dhaka since 2010. In 2021, the theme of this program is “Resilience Through Preparedness”.
The main purpose of this three-day-long practice session is to focus on all the international methods for earthquakes, such as ensuring efforts and coordination of all and finalizing a guideline for rescuing and searching, communication, treatment, relief distribution, and giving shelter during an earthquake.
State Minister for Disaster Management and Relief Dr Md Enamur Rahman inaugurated the program titled 'Disaster Response Exercise and Exchange - DREE' as chief guest at the Army Golf Club in Dhaka.
He said that Bangladesh battled with super-cyclone Amphan during Covid-19 in 2020 when more than 2.4 million people were evacuated to the cyclone shelters within a day.
"We understand the risk of large-scale disasters like earthquakes due to the country's tectonic location and history of the devastating event including the number of small-scale jolts in this region," he said.
"According to the Meteorological Department, 48 earthquakes rocked Bangladesh from January 2016 to September this year. This reminds us of the necessity in enhancing our preparedness and awareness for response and risk reduction," he further explained.
In the inaugural ceremony, Principal Staff Officer of the Armed Forces Division Waqar-uz-Zaman, Secretary of the Ministry of Disaster Management and Relief Md Mohsin, and US Army Pacific Major General Reginald GA Neal addressed the event.
They hoped that DREE-BANGLADESH-2021 will reach a milestone in disaster management as it is the largest program in the Asia-Pacific region.
Among others, military and civilian senior officials, military advisers of participating countries and diplomats were also present in this program.
The 23 participating countries include Bangladesh, Nepal, India, United States, United Kingdom, Canada, Japan, Bhutan, Maldives, Sri Lanka, Australia, Indonesia, Philippines, Turkey, Fiji, Mongolia, Laos, Kenya, Germany, New Zealand, Singapore, Nigeria, and China.
Besides, students of disaster management and volunteers from different universities and countries are taking part in the program.