UN head calls for “culture of prevention” in addressing natural disasters


  • Randy Showstack


Citing war and natural disasters as “the major threats to the security of individuals and human communities worldwide,” United Nations Secretary General Kofi Annan, in his September 9 annual report on the UN, urged nations to focus on preventing these threats instead of simply reacting after the fact with relief.

With hurricanes, cyclones, floods, and fires wreaking havoc last year, the United Nations head called 1998 the worst year on record for weather-related natural disasters, which killed tens of thousands of people and displaced millions more. Earthquakes in Afghanistan, Turkey, and elsewhere, he said, added to the destructive toll from natural disasters.