Baird Statement on Canadian Response to Typhoon Haiyan

November 11, 2013 - Foreign Affairs Minister John Baird today made the following announcement on the next steps Canada is taking to support the people of the Philippines as they respond to the devastation caused by Typhoon Haiyan:

“Canada is deeply concerned by the impact of Typhoon Haiyan. The thoughts and prayers of all Canadians are with those who have been affected by this devastating storm. The size and scope is unprecedented.

“Yesterday Canada announced that on top of the $5-million contribution announced by the Honourable Christian Paradis, Minister of International Development and Minister for La Francophonie, the government would match dollar for dollar the contributions made by Canadians.

“We also announced that Canada is deploying the Interdepartmental Strategic Support Team (ISST), which is due to land in the Philippines later tonight. This team is deployed ahead of Canada’s Disaster Assistance Response Team to assess the needs on the ground.

“Today Prime Minister Stephen Harper directed the deployment of the Disaster Assistance Response Team (DART) to the region. We are working to ensure that our assets and personnel are nearby and ready to assist on a moment’s notice.

“In the next few hours, a C-17 aircraft will deploy from Trenton, Ontario, as part of an advance component of DART.

“As Prime Minister Harper said today in his discussion with Benigno Aquino, the President of the Philippines, Canada stands ready to support the Philippines in responding to this disaster. This is a message I will relay to my counterpart later this evening when we speak.

“It is clear that the devastation is real, although the extent of the destruction has yet to be fully discovered. Canada continues to work with international humanitarian partners, and its allies to determine what is required to meet the urgent needs of the Filipino people.

“Nine and a half million people have been affected, in nine regions across the Philippines. More than 600,000 people are displaced—about three quarters of them inside evacuation centres. Sadly, the death toll continues to rise. Shelter, food, water and other essential support are needed.

“We again appeal to all Canadians to be generous and donate. As noted, our government will match each contribution dollar for dollar.

“More information can be found at International.gc.ca.”

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