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Earthquake in Chile: EU crisis center on alert

(BRUSSELS2) After the earthquake in Chile and the additional risks of tsunami along the entire Pacific coast of America, the crisis center of the European Commission has been placed on alert, confirmed la European Commissioner for Humanitarian Action and Crisis Response (see my first tweet this morning). " I followed the news closely throughout the night about the earthquake in Chile. First of all, I would like to express my condolences to the families of the victims. I immediately activated the Crisis Center of the European Civil Protection Mechanism (MIC). I also requested the immediate mobilization of ECHO humanitarian experts in order to be ready to carry out needs assessment missions if necessary. " said Kristalina Georgieva. " The MIC continues to monitor the situation and the Commission stands ready to respond to any request for assistance that may come from the Chilean authorities and to coordinate European efforts if necessary She added.

The European Commission has a delegation in Santiago de Chile which is closely monitoring the situation with the crisis center established in Brussels (MIC and ECHO). While the European Commission's humanitarian office (ECHO) has regional offices in Managua as well as Bogota and Quito.

Comment: One can notice the rapid public reaction of the new commissioner Georgieva,who is today traveling to Haiti for a five-day field visit. A double "baptism of fire", after the entry into office, of the new European Commission, on February 19. The lesson of Haiti seems to have borne fruit. An identical system had, indeed, been put in place in Haiti; but the
High Representative, Catherine Ashton, had then taken 48 hours to react publicly and appeared in tow of the events.
The new Bulgarian commissioner who was “parachuted” at the last minute to the European Commission, following the defection of the first commissioner-designate Jeleva, thus confirms the first general positive impression, made after his hearing in the European Parliament. " She got it all figured out » several experts on the subject told me. “ We won on the exchange » explained MEPs, whose opinions agreed. In view of the first steps of the new commissioner, we can only acquiesce. 

Nicolas Gros Verheyde

Chief editor of the B2 site. Graduated in European law from the University of Paris I Pantheon Sorbonne and listener to the 65th session of the IHEDN (Institut des Hautes Etudes de la Défense Nationale. Journalist since 1989, founded B2 - Bruxelles2 in 2008. EU/NATO correspondent in Brussels for Sud-Ouest (previously West-France and France-Soir).