The Crisis Centre of the Indonesian Bishops' Conference, which has been on the frontline to offer aid, has declared the emergency phase is winding up in Yogyakarta region. The director has declared he is "proud of the response from different communities". More than 100,000 dollars were raised in Indonesia alone in just over 10 days.
AsiaNews visited the areas hardest hit by the 27 May quake in Java: Wedi, Gantiwarno and Bayat in Klaten regency. Here are the stories of survivors, who search among the ruins for items of value, and who are paralyzed by terror. The tragedy has led to previously unheard-of trends, like begging and heavy vehicle traffic.
The account of a priest who visited areas struck by the earthquake in the three days right after the tragedy. He talks about the damage suffered by the Catholic community in Java, survivors' desperation, beggars on the road and children crying for scraps of food.
A Jesuit visited the three districts of Wedi, Gantiwarno and Bayat Klaten regency and told of the suffering of quake survivors who have been left to their own devices. Here the damage done was worse than in Bantul and Yogyakarta, but aid and solidarity are lacking, even from fellow citizens. The provisional death toll of victims has exceeded 6,200.
Apart from food and medicine, WHO and Jakarta are also asking donors for orthopedic materials. Foreign aid is pouring in. The Indonesian authorities are grappling with treated patients who do not want to leave overcrowded hospitals.
Survivors in quake-hit zones are praying for their dead and that those wounded may be healed. The Bishops' Conference has launched a fund to raise money for stricken zones. We have listed the bank account details for donations.
Aid is arriving slowly: milk and clothes for child survivors are lacking. Tents available are still very few: survivors are sleeping under the trees in graveyards, along roads in makeshift shelters or in animal sheds.
Around 200,000 displaced people spent their second night outdoors. Aid is on the way; the commitment of Caritas Internationalis. "Extensive" damage has been reported to the Hindu temple of Prambanan, the largest in the country.
Despite the tragic situation, parishioners in the area destroyed by the quake went to mass to respond to the invitation of the pope to "pray for victims, their families and survivors". Functions were held outdoors for fear that more buildings may collapse.
While the death toll climbs relentlessly, those spared by the quake are facing ever more hardships. There are thousands of wounded people, with broken limbs, left without shelter in the rain.
The quake took place this morning around Yogyakarta, flattening houses and affecting thousands of people. The president has called out the army. Hospitals are already full to overflowing: doctors are being forced to operate outside. Mosques and churches are hosting displaced people.
The official death toll is over 2,700. Parishes are coming together to free those buried by the ruins. Bridges and roads are destroyed so it is difficult to reach the wounded to ferry them to hospital. Local medics are pleading for reinforcements from nearby areas.
Masses for victims are being held in parishes across central Java; many people from Jakarta are trying to reach relatives in quake-hit zones, desperately seeking rail or bus tickets. Survivors will spend the night out of doors, without electricity.