FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
The Security Council held emergency consultations today to discuss the urgent efforts to save lives and provide desperately needed assistance to the people of Haiti.
The world has shown strong solidarity with the people and the Government of Haiti in their time of grief and need. The United States joins all nations in bowing our heads in sorrow for the unbearable losses endured by the Haitian people. We grieve alongside them, and we grieve along with the families and loved ones of the brave UN personnel, leadership, and peacekeepers, and the many nations they represented, who gave their lives to the cause of a stronger Haiti.
The UN has suffered the largest loss of life in its history. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon and the entire UN leadership team have done extraordinary work under extremely difficult circumstances. Grieving and wounded colleagues and officials have risen in this hour of need to provide assistance to the people of Haiti. The United States and our partners on the Security Council are acting quickly to authorize the increase in security forces and police that the Secretary-General has requested.
I salute the work being done under extraordinarily difficult conditions by the Government and people of Haiti and the dedicated men and women of MINUSTAH. Haiti’s government and people had been making impressive progress toward greater stability and prosperity before this calamity struck. This tragedy has only deepened our commitment to working closely together with the Government of Haiti, the UN, nations all around the world, and other international partners to build a better, stronger Haiti.
The United States is actively supporting rescue, relief and reconstruction efforts in Haiti at the request of the Government of Haiti. President Obama and President Preval committed on Friday to coordinate assistance among the key parties, most importantly the Haitian government, the UN, the United States and the many international partners and aid organizations on the ground. As President Préval and Secretary Clinton reaffirmed in a joint communiqué “the Governments of Haiti and the United States will continue to cooperate under this shared understanding to promote the most safe and effective rescue, relief, recovery and reconstruction efforts possible.” In that communiqué, President Preval welcomed “as essential the efforts in Haiti by the Government and people of the United States to support the immediate recovery, stability and long-term rebuilding of Haiti and requests the United States to assist as needed in augmenting security in support of the Government and people of Haiti and the United Nations, international partners and organizations on the ground.”
We cannot bring back those lost in this catastrophe, but together, with partnership and determination, we can bind the wounds of the injured, feed those who are hungry, and begin to build the foundations for a brighter future for the people of Haiti.
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