The news arriving from Tonga is limited, after the violent submarine volcanic eruption and the consequent tsunami that affected the coasts of the entire Pacific Ocean. Chain disasters that would have caused at least two victims (including a British citizen, who until the end tried to save her dogs) and compromised the communication cables that pass into the ocean. Phones and internet are out of order . In particular, the devastation affected an important submarine digital connectivity cable that connects Tonga to the Fiji Islands. The 2G system will soon be rehabilitated , at least to allow the inhabitants to telephone and send messages.
“Tonga risks being isolated for quite some time, considering that 99% of communications are via submarine cables,” said Radio New Zealand. Connection restoration will not be able to begin before February. And it is the New Zealand government that updates the world on what is happening in Tonga.
“There is significant damage in the capital Nuku’alofa (over 20,000 inhabitants) and in particular in the Tongatapu division (where about 74,000 people reside). Communications between the authorities – which are taking place via satellite telephone – outline the extent of the destruction What worries most is the possible humanitarian crisiswhich could arise from the possible contamination of water reserves caused by volcanic dust and the tsunami.
“The local government has declared a state of emergency , in the capital there are damage to buildings, there are many rubble and rocks, even if people are trying to return to normal,” the High Commissioner told the broadcaster 1News. New Zealand interim in Tonga, Peter Lund, who stressed “great efforts underway to get rid of the thick blanket of ash that covers the area”.
Ash that creates inconvenience to the rescue car, which is still stationary because flights are blocked. At first the “ash clouds”, released by the volcano and now the thick layer of dust, deposited on the landing strip, make travel unsafe. The involvement of 200 people committed to cleaning the airport runway was not enough, the road surface restoration work could last until tomorrow. Fatafehi ​​Fakafanua, president of the Legislative Assembly of Tonga, said: “The ashes are proving to be problematic, not only for water and sanitation because the inhabitants collect water from the roofs of houses, but in terms of access of the houses. aid from Australia and New Zealand and other flights “.
New Zealand Foreign Minister Nanaia Mahuta assured that a C-130, loaded with humanitarian aid such as water,, it would be ready to take off. The army is already active at sea, moving towards the archipelago with two ships, the Wellington and the Aotearoa, which in addition to humanitarian supplies will transport a Seasprite helicopter. In detail, Aotearoa will be able to guarantee 250,000 liters of drinking water and produce 70,000 per day thanks to a desalination plant. New Zealand also announced aid of one million New Zealand dollars as Australia prepares to send a ship.
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Tonga, the eruption of the underwater volcano seen from the satellite
After the explosion of the volcano, one of the most powerful explosions in the last three decades, experts continue to monitor satellite images. It emerges that of the Hunga Tonga-Hunga Haʻapai volcanoonly two small portions of land remain above sea level, previously larger and connected by a strip of land that stretched up to 1.2 kilometers. Experts speak of the ” worst volcanic eruption of the last 30 years ” occurred on the entire planet, comparable to that of the Pinatubo volcano, in the Philippines, in 1991, which caused 1,450 deaths.
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Tonga, before and after the volcano eruption

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