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Guadeloupe and Martinique after Dean

Published on Thursday, August 23, 2007Email To Friend    Print Version

By Danik Ibraheem Zandwonis
Caribbean Net News Guadeloupe Correspondent
Email: danik@caribbeannewsnow.com/caribnet

POINTR-A-PITRE, Guadeloupe: Five days after the passage of Dean over Guadeloupe and Martinique, it’s time to review the consequences of this hurricane. French prime minister, Francois Fillon, arrived in Martinique and was due to follow with a trip Guadeloupe for a very short stay.

French Prime Minister Francois Fillon and officials assessing hurricane damage.
Just after the hurricane, French Overseas Minister, Christian Estrozy came from Paris to Martinique, as usual after a hurricane, to take a look at the situation.

Dean was very hard on Martinique, three persons died, and many injured. About 600 Martiniquans are absolutely homeless. According to Estrozy, the damages will be close to 250 million Euros. Banana fields are completely destroyed and more than 11,000 people are without telephone and electricity.

In Guadeloupe, according to agriculture sources, some 80 percent of the bananas were destroyed. In the south part, where Dean blew very strongly, banana fields were flattened and water is not yet drinkable.

The arrival of the French prime minister in Guadeloupe and Martinique could show that the new French government of President Nicolas Sarkozy wants to give true importance to this disaster. However, the French prime minister's visit was to be so brief that many wonder if he could possibly get a complete assesment of the situation in the two islands.

The president of France has said he would welcome a top level political delegation from Guadeloupe and Martinique. Accordingly, Victorin Lurel, the president of the Guadeloupean Regional Council, and his colleague in Martinique, Alfred Marie Jeannne, together with the eight deputies from Guadeloupe and Martinique, will meet with Sarkozy very soon in Paris.

Meanwhile, In Martinique, some very famous writers such as Edouard Glissant, Patrick Chamoiseau and Raphael Confiant, wrote an open letter to air their grievances concerning French politics after Dean.

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