The December 26 earthquake and tsunami devastated the lives of millions of people, leaving a wake of destruction from Asia to Africa. This was the worst natural disaster in Indonesia’s history, and Aceh and North Sumatra suffered the most. Over 110,000 people lost their lives, an estimated 700,000 people were displaced, and many orphaned. The scale of the damages to the local economy, infrastructure, and administration were unprecedented. In an instant, the livelihoods and security of hundreds of thousands of the survivors were ruined.
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