Haiti in Crisis After Quake, Bodies in Streets, Escaped Inmates Running Loose
January 13, 2010
(ChattahBox)—-After the worst earthquake to hit the impoverished country of Haiti in 200 years, the country is suffering from complete devastation “worse than a war zone.” The poor country where most of the people live on one or two dollars a day, are roaming the city streets of Port-Au-Prince injured and in shock, where many of the buildings constructed from cement blocks are in ruins, including schools, hospitals, the National Palace and the U.N. peacekeeping headquarters. Unconfirmed estimates put the death toll in the hundreds of thousands, with many injured. The dead bodies are being piled in the streets, as they are removed from damaged buildings. And the UN reported that the country’s main prison was destroyed, leaving dangerous inmates to run loose on the streets in the middle of the chaos.
Among the dead are the head of the U.N. peacekeeping mission and the archbishop of Port-au-Prince, Monsignor Joseph Serge Miot. There is no electricity and communication with government officials is difficult. Thankfully, the United Nations said Port-au-Prince’s main airport was “fully operational” and open to relief flights.
According to a MSNBC report: “Haitian President René Préval told the Miami Herald that he had been stepping over dead bodies and hearing the cries of those trapped under the rubble of the national Parliament building, describing the scene as “unimaginable.”
A man on the scene described the devastation as a war zone:
“Speaking from Port-au-Prince, Frank Thorp, Jr., told NBC’s Today show how he helped dig through the rubble to rescue his wife from under a collapsed building. She had been trapped for 10 hours, he said. Thorp said his spouse, who is a missionary in the country, was “doing OK” and suffered only bruises during her ordeal. However, a colleague who had also been buried lost both of her legs. Thorp described conditions in Port-au-Prince as “worse than a war zone.”‘
The United States together with the international Red Cross and other relief agencies are either already in Haiti’s capital or on their way.
President Obama promised Haiti the full support of the United States:
“The people of Haiti will have the full support of the United States in the urgent effort to rescue those trapped beneath the rubble and to deliver the humanitarian relief – the food, water and medicine – that Haitians will need in the coming days,” he said.
“The reports and images that we have seen of collapsed hospitals, crumbled homes, and men and women carrying their injured neighbors through the streets are truly heart-wrenching,” he noted.
See MSNBC for more.