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This is how most of the communities´ houses are looking like in the Atlantic Coast.

The first reports about the disaster caused by Hurricane Mitch, indicated great losses in the western and northen part of the country. Up until that moment nobody had thought about the Atlantic Coast of Nicaragua.

It was until Reverend Norman Bent from the Moravian Church launched the first alert when the news started to reach us all.

"Mitch" was not forgetting the Atlantic Coast since it had threatened it since it appeared to head toward Jamaica. The first reports show tremendous damage in infrastructure, harvest lost, communities gravely affected, people dissappeared and even some death.

Hurricane "Joan" destroyed -ten years ago-, 13 communities in the South Atlantic, but this new mortal storm destroyed a greater number of communities and increased the historical hardship in which indigenous communities haven been kept.

 A miskito woman trying to save the door from what was left of her house.

Damages came from everywhere. The Coco River and all it´s streams due to the heavy rain in the south of Honduras. This provoked disaster in all communities located at the border of the river, particularly Waspán.

Other rivers that overflowed were the Lekus, Uclan, Prinzapolka and Bambana. From the south the disaster came from the province of Matagalpa the Grand River overflowed, flooding Bocana de Paiwas.

Nobody knows exactly the numbers of victims, death and dissappeared, but non-governmental organisation are indicating that there are approximately 45,000 victims. It is also believed that there are about 4,000 victims that fled their communities and did not go to refugee centers.

Despite the approximate numbers which show lower victims than the rest of the country, it has to be taken into account the fact the Atlantic Coast has lost six consecutive harvest due to El Niño and rivers overflow.

Aerial view of Wiwili, a municipality of Jinotega where many indigenous communities were bordering the river. All photos from La Prensa newspaper.

The people from the Atlantic Coast, indigenous, miskitos and mestizos are urgently needing food in order to survive. This food has to be brought to them because the harvest is 100% lost: rice harvest was wiped out, approximately 1,500 cattles are dead (it is believed that 80% of cattles are dead) and this situation goes from Waspán to Raiti.

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