PM remembers tsunami victims

As countries in the Indo-Pacific prepare to commemorate 10 years on from the devastating Boxing Day tsunami, Prime Minister Tony Abbott has paid tribute to the many lives lost.

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Australia pledged $1 billion in humanitarian funds and played a key role helping with the overwhelming task of identifying thousands of victims of the Indian Ocean tsunamis that killed 227,898 people across the region.

Commemoration ceremonies are planned in Thailand and Indonesia on Friday for the 10th anniversary.

Mr Abbott said that it was a time to remember the many victims of the tragedy, to pay tribute to those who were involved in the search, rescue and rebuilding efforts.

“Ten years on, we remember that the worst of times can bring out the best in people, and that the bonds of friendship between the countries of the Indo-Pacific have never been stronger,” the prime minister said in a statement.

Indonesia bore the brunt of the disaster, with 130,736 people losing their lives. Sri Lanka suffered the second highest number of deaths with 35,322 people killed in the tragedy.

The tsunamis also devastated coastal communities in India, the Maldives, Myanmar (Burma), Malaysia, Somalia, Tanzania, Seychelles, Bangladesh and Kenya.

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