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Three questions….to Jacques Gaillot








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Three questions….to Jacques Gaillot

Solidarity with the victims of the Tsunami has been exceptional all over the world. According to the humanitarian associations this has never been seen before. Do you think that this tragedy has paradoxically wakened up to a new consciousness of international solidarity?

tsunami Yes it did. After the devastating wave that took so many lives, another huge wave has surged, a wave of solidarity. The human family has shown the best it has: compassion. Facing the extent of the disaster, we have opened our heart and our hands. This sudden awareness makes us rejoice. We are able to put the human being at the center of our attention.  
In spite of some outdoing and strategies in helping the people, this globalization of solidarity will mark our time as if humanity understood that the future belongs to solidarity. I see this as an encouraging sign.
In regard to such a disaster, many wonder if their gift (necessarily small compared to the disaster size) will be useful. The question that many don't dare to raise is how much I should give and to who? What do you answer them?
The little rivers make the big ones. My own gift adds to the other gifts. It is useful. I can only trust the organizations to which I give. 


It is up to every one to decide how much depending on his financial situation. It is not enough to give by duty, or with regret or to have a good conscious. What is important is to give with one's heart and if possible with joy. But it is not enough. Solidarity is a long-term process. We have to make known among the wealthy countries that the money used for extra-armaments and for war has to go to the victims of the disaster.
victimes We should also support the cancellation of the debt of the countries that suffered from the disaster: Sri Lanka, India, Indonesia, Thailand, and Malaysia. A debt that amounts up to 300 billions of dollars! 
In the very first days of the catastrophe, the most immediate and tangible help was coming from religious associations (Buddhists, Moslems, Christians). Do you think that religion has a specific place in organizing solidarity in such disaster?
les religions We saw that religious groups were on the location of the tragedy. Since the first hours there has been a local help, with all people working together. In emergency and with very few means, well-established local associations have already provided the first help and have tried to restore a more normal life. This is invaluable!
I saw on the television, religious sisters caring for the sick and bringing food. A Buddhist temple was opened to the victims.
As religious groups they have their say on the difficult organization of solidarity. 
(Interviewed by Olivier Galzi)