Statement on the Status of Unaccounted and Missing South Africans Following the Tsunami Disaster

Ghana- Minister of Foreign Affairs, Dr Nkosazana Dlamini Zuma announced today, Tuesday 25 January 2005, that all South Africans who were designated as unaccounted for, following the Tsunami tragedy have all been found safe and sound.

A total of 2900 South Africans were in the South East Asia Region during the Tsunami tragedy. As a consequence of sustained efforts of the Foreign Affairs Consular Services working in close liaison with affected families in South Africa, the Thailand authorities and Interpol, South Africa has managed to trace the whereabouts of 2896 of its citizens including the 11 who lost their lives.

Accordingly, the focus of the Foreign Ministry's Consular Services is now on the 4 South Africans officially designated as missing. In this regard, the Foreign Ministry is still awaiting the outcome of DNA processes initiated by the Thailand authorities through their Victim Identification Processes.

Additionally, the Foreign Ministry Consular services in Thailand and Pretoria continue to work closely with Interpol as part of efforts to trace the missing 4.

Minister Dlamini Zuma extends the government's gratitude to all the families whose relatives were designated as unaccounted for, for their assistance, co-operation, patience and understanding during the process of tracing their relatives.

Issued by Ronnie Mamoepa at 082-990-4853
Department of Foreign Affairs
P/Bag X152
25 January 2005

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