Tributes are being paid to victims of the Indian Ocean tsunami on the fifth anniversary of the day a giant wall of water claimed more than 230,000 lives.
In Thailand, waves swamped six coastal provinces. Several thousand foreign tourists were among the dead, with some of the world’s most beautiful beaches transformed into mass graves.
One of history’s worst natural disasters, the tsunami hit more than a dozen countries. Indonesia was the worst affected with over 166,000 dead and missing.
Solemn ceremonies are being held across the region, where many survivors are only now putting
memories of the waves behind them.
It was December 26 2004 when towering waves, triggered by an undersea earthquake, crashed ashore. In the wake of the disaster, millions have been spent developing an early warning systerm.