- Title: HAITI/CHINA: Chinese aid arrives in Haiti
- Date: 19th January 2010
- Summary: BEIJING, CHINA (JANUARY 18, 2010) (REUTERS) NEWS CONFERENCE IN PROGRESS JOURNALISTS (SOUNDBITE) (Mandarin) DEPUTY DIRECTOR-GENERAL OF THE DEPARTMENT OF LATIN AMERICAN AND CARIBBEAN AFFAIRS OF THE CHINESE FOREIGN MINISTRY SHEN ZHILIANG SAYING "In the light of the huge loss of life and property caused by the devastating earthquake, the Chinese government and the Chinese Red Cross Society provided emergency relief supplies to Haiti out of a humanitarian spirit. We sincerely wish to help the Haitian people recover from the earthquake."
- Embargoed: 3rd February 2010 01:11
- Topics: International Relations,Disasters / Accidents / Natural catastrophes
- Reuters ID: LVA9OBFDYFU3WA5BKE8LHK02FFB3
- Aspect Ratio: 4:3
- Story Text: The first batch of Chinese humanitarian aid, worth a total of 13 million yuan ($1.9 million U.S. dollars) to Haiti, landed at Port-au-Prince airport on Sunday (January 17), China's state television (CCTV) reported.
The aid included 30 tonnes of medical supplies, 1,000 tents, 4,000 items of clothing, dried food, emergency lights and water purifiers, according to CCTV.
China sent a 50-member-strong seasoned Chinese rescue team to Haiti earlier last week, carrying some food and equipment.
When asked if there would be any further plan to set up diplomatic ties with Haiti, a Chinese Foreign Ministry official stressed that China's delivery of aid was purely a wish to help with disaster relief.
"In the light of the huge loss of life and property caused by the devastating earthquake, the Chinese government and the Chinese Red Cross Society provided emergency relief supplies to Haiti out of a humanitarian spirit. We sincerely wish to help the Haitian people recover from the earthquake," Shen Zhiliang, Deputy Director-General of the Department of Latin American and Caribbean Affairs of the Chinese Foreign Ministry, told a news conference in Beijing on Monday (January 18).
CCTV said more aid would be delivered to Haiti soon.
World leaders have pledged massive assistance to rebuild Haiti after Tuesday's (January 12) quake killed as many as 200,000 people and left its capital, Port-au-Prince, in ruins.
But five days into the crisis, food distribution and medical assistance were only just starting to get to those in need.
Hundreds of thousands of hungry survivors have been waiting for help, many of them in makeshift camps on streets, strewn with debris and decomposing bodies.
"There are a lot of us coming from other provinces in Haiti. We all want to go back to our homes very much, but we don't have money, so we cannot go back home," said one survivor.
Ninety percent of Port-au-Prince's supermarkets had been destroyed by the earthquake, and people waited to grab anything useful that could be dug out of the rubble by rescue workers.
The city was facing gas shortages as most of its gas stations were deserted and had supplies cut off, according to CCTV.
In one of Haiti's main hospitals, wailing injured earthquake victims litter the grounds, waiting for treatment on makeshift beds as there were not enough doctors and few medical supplies.
"There are a lot of external injuries. Medical experts and equipment are needed badly," said one doctor.
Eighty percent of local doctors were either killed or left injured by the quake, according to CCTV.
Vendors were seen again on the streets of the capital city, selling vegetables and soft drinks, but at a much higher price.
In a resettlement, hundreds of people crowded under makeshift tents, and there was only a small bottle of fresh water for every seven people each day, CCTV reported.
Authorities have reported some looting and growing anger among survivors despairing over the delay in assistance, as the United States and other nations rushed to deliver food, water and medical supplies through a jammed airport, a damaged seaport and roads littered with rubble.
Haiti is the Western Hemisphere's poorest country and has for decades struggled with devastating storms, floods and political unrest.
About 9,000 U.N. peacekeepers have provided security since a 2004 uprising ousted one president but the mission lost at least 40 members when its headquarters collapsed, including its top leaders.
Haitian government officials said the total death toll was likely to be between 100,000 and 200,000.
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