DUSHANBE , June 28, Asia-Plus - An international three-day conference on the implementation of the Hyogo Declaration on reducing and mitigating natural disaster risks opened in Dushanbe today, according to information from press service of the Ministry of Emergency Situations (MES).

The conference is aiming to consider issues related to workout and development of standardized methods of collection and analysis of information for the purpose of appropriate planning of actions to respond to natural disasters and reduce casualties and damage caused by natural disasters based on clear analysis of risks.  

The conference participants include representatives from emergency management agencies of Tajikistan, Central Asia and Russia, as well as representatives from diplomatic missions, international organizations and NGOs.   

The conference is staged by MES under support of international organizations of OXFAM, FOCUS, ECHO and UN Natural Disaster Management Support Project.  On the sidelines of the conference, an exercise involving servicemen of the Tajik MES will be held at the training ground Almosi on June 30.    

            We will recall that a world five-day conference on disaster reduction was held in from 18 to 22 January 2005 in Kobe City of Japan’s Hyogo Prefecture.  Delegates from around the world in the Japanese city of Kobe agreed on the need to build early warning systems and make disaster preparation a priority.  After marathon talks, delegates agreed on the text of a declaration that was then approved on January 22.  "It is vital to give high priority to disaster risk reduction in national policy, consistent with governments'' capacities and resources available," the declaration said.  "We believe it is critically important that the Hyogo Framework for Action be translated into concrete action at all levels," the document - named after Hyogo Prefecture - said.  The forum also agreed to put the UN in charges of building a tsunami alert system for the Indian Ocean to be operational in up to 18 months.  The plan urges nations to share satellite-based weather forecasting data, draw up hazard maps and work out disaster-response strategies over the next 10 years.