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Typhoon Amphan: Thousands of people in India and Bangladesh have been displaced by storms



A woman carries a child through heavy rain as they evacuate a slum in Kolkata, India, ahead of Cyclone Amphan on Wednesday, May 20.

The Chief Minister of West Bengal State, Mamata Banerjee, said on Wednesday at least 12 people had been killed in eastern India, with a young girl in the Howrah district killed after a wall collapsed inside her home.

In neighboring Bangladesh, the death toll from Typhoon Amphan has risen by 10, according to the government’s Emergency Health Operations Center. Among those killed was a 57-year-old Red Crescent volunteer in Barisal who sank while trying to help others for safety, the Bangladesh Red Crescent Society said.

Large-scale evacuation efforts across India and Bangladesh appear to have saved many lives, but it can take days to fully realize death, injury and damage from the typhoon. Falling debris has made many roads impossible and heavy rains continue to fall in the affected areas.

The disaster teams worked all night and until Thursday morning in the states of West Bengal and Odisha in India, cutting down trees and other debris from the road.

Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi acknowledged the devastation caused by the typhoon in a series of tweets on Thursday, writes, “No stone will be missed in helping the victims.”

“All nations stand in solidarity with West Bengal,” he wrote. “My thoughts were with the Odisha people when the country bravely fought against the effects of the Typhoon Amphan.”

Sunderbans Island ‘pounded’

S.N. Pradhan, director general of the Indian National Disaster Relief Force (NDRF), said the worst damage had occurred in the two coastal districts of West Bengal and that Sundanese people had been “destroyed” by the typhoon.

Sunderbans are a group of ecologically fragile low-lying islands spread across India and Bangladesh, known for mangrove forests and endangered wildlife, including endangered Bengal tigers.

“The maximum impact, as expected has been seen there,” Pradhan said.

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Four of the least affected districts of the country can operate in four to six days, and parts of Odisha’s coast are expected to return tonight, he said.

“People have started to move from shelters to assess the damage to their homes. Some have even begun to repair their damaged homes,” Pradhan said.

In Kolkata, the largest city in the direct lane of the typhoon and home to 14 million people, Pradhan said that many trees had been uprooted and “the city has never seen such strong winds.”

Typhoon Amphan is a bigger disaster than a coronavirus outbreak, Banerjee state chief minister said at a press conference on Wednesday.

“The entire southern part of the state has been affected. We are shocked,” the chief minister said. “The cyclone has affected electricity supplies and destroyed many homes, bridges and embankments.”

In areas affected by typhoons, many villagers live in temporary houses with thatched or thatched roofs, which are easily swept away by strong winds.

In Bangladesh, almost every coastal district has been seriously affected by Typhoon Amphan, according to Ranjit Kumar Sen, an official at Bangladesh’s Ministry of Management and Disaster Relief.

Sen said that the damage along the coast was “huge.” Of the 10 killed in the country, five are in the state of Barisal – including Red Crescent volunteers – four in Khuna, and one in Chittagong.

Some dams that are not properly maintained strike even before the typhoon makes landfall, causing massive flooding in some parts of the country.

Snigdha Chakraborty, with the Catholic Relief Services charity, said the country saw storms surging as high as 4.5 meters, flooding homes across the country.

Typhoon Amphan landed on the east coast of India, near Sagar Island in West Bengal, around 5pm. local time Wednesday (7.30 am ET) and begins tracking north to Kolkata, with wind speeds of up to 160 kph (100 mph), according to data from the US Joint Typhoon Warning Center.

Amphan weakened to the equivalent of an Atlantic tropical storm when crossing the border between West Bengal and Bangladesh early Thursday, but it still flapped strong winds up to 110 kilometers per hour (68 miles per hour). This system is expected to continue to weaken for the next 24 hours while moving northeast.

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The next danger will come from heavy rains, which can cause flash floods throughout the region until Thursday morning.

Mass evacuation and coronavirus

Ambitious evacuations carried out by India and Bangladesh saw around 3 million people move to safety in both countries, according to regional authorities.

The relief operation came even though India and Bangladesh were still under strict locking orders due to coronavirus. The virus, which continues to spread in both countries, has complicated the emergency response, as aid teams wrestle with how to make people safe while also protecting them against the risk of Covid-19.

India passed more than 100,000 confirmed infections earlier this week, according to Johns Hopkins University, and recorded the biggest one-day surge on Wednesday with 5,611 new cases. Meanwhile, the number of infections in Bangladesh is increasing rapidly, with more than 1,300 new cases on Sunday, the largest increase to date. In total, the country has recorded 26,738 confirmed infections, according to Johns Hopkins.

Police officers take a disabled man to a safer place after evacuating from a slum in Kolkata, India.

In Odisha, where more than 150,000 people were evacuated, a total of 211 of the 809 permanent state hurricane shelters were used as the Covid-19 quarantine center.

Pradeep Jena, commissioner of special assistance for the state of Odisha, said emergency services must balance saving lives from typhoons with saving lives from coronavirus. In evacuation centers, Jena said that they are trying to separate elderly and pregnant women from other populations and work hard to get adequate soap.

“Social alignment is clearly a very good concept but enforcing it in the strictest way possible in a disaster situation may not always be possible,” he said.

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In West Bengal India, which bears the burden of a hurricane, around 500,000 people are temporarily sheltered in storm shelters, according to authorities, while in Bangladesh the government says they have evacuated 2.4 million people and around 40,000 farm animals.

People gather at the typhoon center for protection before Typhoon Amphan lands in Gabura, on the outskirts of Satkhira district, Bangladesh on May 20.

It is unknown when many of these people will be able to return home. Oxfam Bangladesh’s director, Dipankar Datta, said on Wednesday that thousands of emergency homes in Bangladesh had been revoked because of the typhoon.

In what appears to be a glimmer of hope, Chakraborty of the Catholic Relief Service has not reported any major damage so far in the refugee camps at Cox’s Bazar, which is home to nearly 1 million Rohingya refugees and a source of concern. to help workers after Covid-19 cases were identified there last week.

Some shelters were weak damaged in the storm and now need to be repaired, he said.

Despite concerns that rainfall from storms – despite landing on the other side of Bangladesh – could still cause landslides and floods in the camps.

Salman Saeed and Abir Mahmud in Bangladesh, and Esha Mitra from CNN, Rebecca Wright, Brandon Miller, Michael Guy, Joshua Berlinger, Ben Westcott and Manveena Suri contributed to this article.

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Portuguese historical films will premiere on 29 December.



Portuguese historical films will premiere on 29 December.

Method Media Bermuda will present the documentary FABRIC: Portuguese History in Bermuda on Thursday, December 29 at the Underwater Research Institute of Bermuda.

A spokesperson said: “Method Media is proud to bring Bermuda Fabric: Portugal History to Bermuda for its 5th and 6th showing at the Bermuda Underwater Observatory. In November and December 2019, Cloth: A Portuguese Story in Bermuda had four sold-out screenings. Now that Bermuda has reopened after the pandemic, it’s time to bring the film back for at least two screenings.

“There are tickets For $ 20 – sessions at 15:30 and 18:00. Both screenings will be followed by a short Q&A session.

Director and producer Milton Raboso says, “FABRIC is a definitive account of the Portuguese community in Bermuda and its 151 years of history, but it also places Bermuda, Acors and Portugal in the world history and the events that have fueled those 151 years.

“It took more than 10 years to implement FABRIC. The film was supported by the Minister of Culture, the Government of the Azores and private donors.

Bermuda Media Method [MMB] Created in 2011 by producer Milton Raposo. MMB has created content for a wide range of clients: Bermuda’s new hospital renovation, reinsurance, travel campaigns, international sports and more. MMB pays special attention to artistic, cultural and historical content.

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Maestro de Braga is the first Portuguese in the National Symphony Orchestra of Cuba.



Maestro de Braga is the first Portuguese in the National Symphony Orchestra of Cuba.

Maestro Filipe Cunha, Artistic Director of the Philharmonic Orchestra of Braga, has been invited to conduct the Cuban National Symphony Orchestra, as announced today.

According to a statement sent by O MINHO, “he will be the first Portuguese conductor to conduct this orchestra in its entire history.”

In addition to this orchestra, the maestro will also work with the Lyceo Mozarteum de la Habana Symphony Orchestra.

The concerts will take place on 4 and 12 March 2023 at the National Theater of Cuba in Havana.

In the words of the maestro, quoted in the statement, “these will be very beautiful concerts with difficult but very complex pieces” and therefore he feels “very motivated”.

From the very beginning, Rachmaninoff’s Piano Concerto No. 2 will be performed by an Italian pianist (Luigi Borzillo), whom the maestro wants to bring to Portugal later this year. In the same concert, Mendelshon’s First Symphony will be performed.

Then, at the second concert, in the company of the Mexican clarinetist Angel Zedillo, he will perform the Louis Sfora Concerto No. 2. In this concert, the maestro also conducts Tchaikovsky’s Fifth Symphony.

“This is an international recognition of my work. An invitation that I accept with humility and great responsibility. I was surprised to learn that I would be the first Portuguese member of the Cuban National Symphony Orchestra. This is a very great honor,” the maestro said in a statement.

“I take with me the name of the city of Braga and Portugal with all the responsibility that goes with it, and I hope to do a good job there, leaving a good image and putting on great concerts. These will be very special concerts because, in addition to performing pieces that I love, especially Rachmaninov and Tchaikovsky, I will be directing two wonderful soloists who are also my friends. It will be very beautiful,” concludes Filipe Cunha.

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