Sunday, February 28, 2010

US-HAITI: Katrina Victims Feel Kinship, Offer Help

US-HAITI: Katrina Victims Feel Kinship, Offer Help, by Matthew Cardinale, Inter Press Service News Agency, February 28, 2010 Many survivors of Hurricane Katrina, which struck New Orleans and the U.S. Gulf Coast in August 2005, have been seeing their own reflection in media images of Haiti earthquake victims. And despite - or even because of - their own struggle, many feel personally driven to help organise assistance for the people of Haiti. More...

Mullen Leads Trip to Haiti, Faces Preval's Ire on Allegation

Mullen Leads Trip to Haiti, Faces Preval's Ire on Allegation, by Craig Whitlock, The Washington Post, February 27, 2010 Haitian President René Préval faces many challenges: a country in ruins, a government in tatters, a traumatized population. But on Friday, he wanted to get something else off his chest. More...

Friday, February 26, 2010

Ministerial Committee Set Up for Haiti

Ministerial Committee Set Up for Haiti, BuaNews (posted on allAfrica).com, February 15, 2010
Pretoria — All relief activities to quake hit Haiti will be coordinated through a ten-member ministerial committee set up by the Minister for International Relations and Cooperation. Maite Nkoana-Mashabane announced the establishment of the committee to be headed by her deputy Sue van der Merwe, on Sunday. More...

ZIK Varsity Raises N1 Million for Haiti Quake Victims

ZIK Varsity Raises N1 Million for Haiti Quake Victims, Vincent Ujumadu, Vanguard (posted on, February 15, 2010
Awka — Touched by the huge devastation of Haiti by the recent seven-point earthquake, the Nnamdi Azikiwe University community has collected N1.134million, an equivalent of $7,413 for Haiti earthquake victims. The Vice Chancellor of the university, Professor Boniface Egboka initiated the humanitarian gesture by setting up a committee to coordinate the collection of the donations. More

Buea - OIC Opts For A Facelift

Buea - OIC Opts For A Facelift, Laure Nganlay, Cameron Tribune (posted on, February 18, 2010
Members of the Board of Directors briefed the press, discussed the Haiti relief fund raising amidst other pertinent issues.Led by board Chairperson, Barrister Ekontang Elad, eight board members of the Opportunities Industrialization Centre International (OICI) Buea on Monday, February15, 2010 briefed the press on some key issues affecting the institution. More

Haiti - Imperatives of Disaster Preparedness

Haiti - Imperatives of Disaster Preparedness, Innocent Adikwu, The Day (posted on, February 18, 2010
Lagos — The world witnessed yet another catastrophic devastation, human suffering and misery of epic proportions as Haiti grappled with a 7.0 Richter scale earthquake that struck that country Tuesday January 12. United Nations Secretary-General, Ban Ki-moon described the earthquake and its aftermaths as the most serious humanitarian crisis to face the world body in decades. More

NGO Donates Relief Materials to Victims

NGO Donates Relief Materials to Victims, Seriki Adinoyi, This Day (posted on, February 2010
Jos — A Lagos-based religious non-governmental organisation (NGO) Shipwrecked's Spar of Hope Ministry, has donated several relief materials, including shoes and clothing to victims of the recent Jos Crisis. Delivering the relief materials to the State Secretary of Nigerian Red Cross Society, Mr. Manasseh Pampeh, founder of the organisation, Mr. Tunji Chris Ekundayo, said the little token from the NGO is to cushion the effects of the crisis on the victims. More

Globacom - 28,000 Citizens Responded to Haiti Fundraising

Globacom - 28,000 Citizens Responded to Haiti Fundraising, This Day (posted on, February 17, 2010
Lagos — Globacom has disclosed that about 28,000 Nigerians have responded to the fundraising appeal it launched a fortnight ago to help the unfortunate victims of the recent earthquake in Haiti. Globacom's Head, Value Added Services, Mr. Samson Isa, disclosed that over 28,000 Nigerians have so far responded to the fundraising appeal by sending the word HAITI to 33090, a special short code created for the purpose. More

Haiti As Seen Through Pan African Eyes

Haiti As Seen Through Pan African Eyes, Tichaona Zindoga, The Herald (posted on, February 23, 2010
FOLLOWING the devastating earthquake that left over 200 000 people dead and destroyed almost everything in Haiti last month, the world was treated to eccentric Western hype about self-inflicted poverty, hopelessness and the heroism of foreign rescue efforts. The West, through its media, even justified the occupation of this second largest Caribbean Island, which they religiously touted as the "poorest nation in the Western Hemisphere". More

Catholic Children Extend Solidarity to Haitian Children

Catholic Children Extend Solidarity to Haitian Children, Catholic Information Service for Africa (posted on, February 26, 2010
Nairobi — February 20 was a day to reckon with here in Nairobi as about 20,000 Catholic Children converged at Saint Mary's Play Ground, to mark their 2010 Pontifical Missionary Childhood (PMC) Day. And in a show of solidarity with the Haitian children, whose country was last month devastated by a massive earthquake, the assembled children, offered prayers and financial contributions to their counterparts in Haiti. More

Utexrwa in Negotiations to Supply Bed Nets to Haiti

Utexrwa in Negotiations to Supply Bed Nets to Haiti, Fred Ndoli, The New Times (posted on, February 26,2010 Kigali — Utexrwa is in negotiations with the United Nations (UN) where the former will supply 500,000 bed nets to the Haiti earthquake victims. Raj Rajendran, Managing Director of Utexrwa said the textile firm has received an inquiry from UN officials to supply at least 30,000 nets in the first phase. More

On the Trail of the Vultures Picking Over Liberia's Debt

On the Trail of the Vultures Picking Over Liberia's Debt, Greg Palast, BBC 2 Newsnight, February 25, 2010 Greg Palast reports on their latest target, Liberia, and on moves by UK MPs, prompted in part by a previous Newsnight investigation, to outlaw such funds. More

Miami Herald: Haiti Wants Refugees Back in Ravaged Neighborhoods

Haiti Wants Refugees Back in Ravaged Neighborhoods, by Michael Faul, The Miami Herald, February 26, 2010 Relief officials have changed tack and are urging Haiti's earthquake homeless to return to their destroyed neighborhoods as the rainy season fast approaches. Officials had initially planned to build big camps outside Port-au-Prince. They still anticipate creating some settlements, but they decided this week to instead emphasize getting people to pack up their tents and tarps and go home. More...

Liberian Leader Urges MPs to Back Action Against Vulture Funds

Liberian Leader Urges MPs to Back Action Against Vulture Funds, by Heather Stewart and Greg Palast for The Guardian, Thursday, February 25, 2010 Ellen Johnson Sirleaf, the president of Liberia, is urging MPs to back a bill banning vulture funds from using British courts to prey on poor countries when it comes to a vote on Friday. Liberia lost a $20m (£13m) case in London last year against two so-called vultures. Such funds buy up the loans of poor governments, wait for them to win from the international community, and then use courts to pursue the countries for assets. Sirleaf said: "We've been waiting for a parliament or an assembly to take this kind of hard decision. I hope the US Congress and maybe some others in Europe will pick up this gauntlet and will follow the example of Britain." More...

Miami Herald: In Miami, Haitian Workers Struggle to send Money Home

In Miami, Haitian Workers Struggle to send Money Home, by Nadege Charles, The Miami Herald, February 26, 2010 In Miami's Little Haiti, they're known as ti machann, a community of Haitian women who earn a modest living as street vendors, peddling from their parked vans used sneakers, chayote, sweet potatoes, coconuts, industrial-sized rolls of toilet paper and homemade remedies for all sorts of ailments. More...

Thursday, February 25, 2010

Heavy Rain Hits Haiti's Quake-Ravaged Capital

Heavy Rain Hits Haiti's Quake-Ravaged Capital, by MICHELLE FAUL, Associated Press, February 25, 2010 The first heavy rain since the earthquake briefly doused Haiti's capital Thursday night as relief officials changed tack on dealing with the homeless, demphasizing plans to build big camps outside Port-au-Prince. More...

HAITI: Secure Shelters Scarce as Rainy Season Looms

HAITI: Secure Shelters Scarce as Rainy Season Looms, by Ansel Herz, Inter Press Service News Service, February 23, 2010 A cacophony of murmurs and cries echoed through the neighbourhoods of Haiti's capital city Monday night as a violent aftershock shook people awake. Ten minutes later, another tremor rocked the ground, this time more smoothly back and forth. More...

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

The Washington Post: Twitter Strikes Deal To Bring Free SMS Tweets To Haiti

Monday, February 22, 2010; 8:20 AM

Following the disastrous earthquake in Haiti earlier this year, a number of web companies have been setting up special programs to try and do their part to help. Twitter has been one of the most active, as the company has made great use of its social graph to get the word out on how to help through donations and other means. More..

Haiti Progres: and Dominican Republic Discuss Reconstruction

Prime Minister of Haiti Jean Max Bellerive is expected to arrive in Santo Domingo on Saturday, leading a technical delegation that will examine with Dominican peers a strategy to reconstruct the devastated Caribbean country. More..

The Washington Post Reports: Opposition leaders say they want to work with government in rebuilding Haiti

By Edward Cody
Washington Post Foreign Service
Tuesday, February 23, 2010

PORT-AU-PRINCE, HAITI -- Faced with a disaster of overwhelming proportions, Haiti's fractious political opposition is trying to set aside its differences and work with President René Préval to reach a consensus on how to rebuild the devastated country. More..

Amnesty International: Haiti's Human Rights Challenge

Two weeks after the earthquake that devastated Haiti, its people are confronted with a human rights crisis. Amnesty International has identified some of the country's biggest human rights challenges and outlined a plan that puts protection of human rights at the core of relief and reconstruction efforts. More

Human Rights Watch: UN Security Council: Better Shelter, Security Needed for Haiti Victims

February 19, 2010

(New York) - The United Nations Security Council should make improving the quality and security of camps for displaced victims of Haiti's devastating earthquake a top priority, Human Rights Watch said today in an open letter to the Council's member states. The Security Council is being briefed today on the humanitarian situation in Haiti by the UN emergency relief coordinator, John Holmes, and the head of the Peacekeeping Department, Alain Le Roy. More..

Human Rights Watch: Letter to the United Nations Security Council Member Ambassadors

February 19, 2010

Dear Ambassador,

In light of today's briefing to the United Nations Security Council (UNSC) by Emergency Relief Coordinator John Holmes and Under-Secretary-General for Peacekeeping Operations at the United Nations, Alain Le Roy, on the humanitarian situation in Haiti, we write to bring to your urgent attention our preliminary recommendations to improve human rights and humanitarian protection in Haiti, based on an in-country field investigation completed on February 12, 2010More..

CEPR Reports: Haitian Government to Appropriate Land For Shelter

The AP reports on the Haitian government's plans to relocate the 1.2 million displaced by the earthquake. While the government does own some land, it will not be enough, forcing the government to appropriate privately held land. As the AP reports:
The decision, announced in an interview with The Associated Press, is potentially explosive in a country where a small elite owns most of the land in and around the capital. That elite, a traditionally corrupting force in Haitian politics, has the power to bring down the government. More..

Democracy Now! : Damming the Flood: Haiti, Aristide, and the Politics of Containment”

Haitian President René Préval said Sunday that the death toll from the earthquake could reach 300,000 once all the bodies are recovered from the rubble. We speak to Peter Hallward, professor of Modern European Philosophy at Middlesex University. “Unless prevented by renewed popular mobilization in both Haiti and beyond, the perverse international emphasis on security will continue to distort the reconstruction effort, and with it the configuration of Haitian politics for some time to come,” wrote Hallward recently. More

As Haitian Schools Reopen Families Face Evictions

As Haitian schools prepare to re-open for the first time following January's earthquake, many families are faced with eviction.

School grounds across Port-au-Prince are filled with make-shift camps.

And the government's drive to re-open schools means hundreds of displaced people will have to leave their make-shift homes. More..

Fears of Neglect for Haitian Orphans

Al Jazeera: Americas-Haiti Orphans Facing Neglect

There are mounting concerns in Haiti's earthquake-hit capital over the welfare of thousands of orphans suffering amid the devastation.

Al Jazeera has learnt of at least one government-sanctioned orphanage in the capital, Port-au-Prince, where children are kept in shocking conditions. More

Guardian UK: Communities will make Haiti Strong

The most basic needs still have to be catered for, although steps towards the longer-term recovery of communities are already being taken. Haiti's problems are historic, entrenched and clearly cannot be solved by aid agencies alone. More..

Monday, February 22, 2010



Préval Seeks Help from LAC

Préval Seeks Help from LAC, The Jamaica Observer, February 22, 2010 Haitian President René Préval arrived in the Mexican resort city of Cancun yesterday to seek help from Latin American and Caribbean leaders to rebuild his quake-shattered Caribbean nation. More...

Indies Pharma Gives to Haiti Relief

Indies Pharma Gives $18m to Haiti Relief, by Janet Silvera, The Jamaica Gleaner, February 22, 2010 THE WESTERN Jamaica-based pharmaceutical company, Indies Pharma, has donated prescription and non-prescription drugs to the Haitian-relief programme valued at $18 million (US$207,500). The Jamaican-owned organisation has already handed over the medical supplies to the Ministry of Health, company chairman Dr Guna Muppuri told The Gleaner. More...

Jamaica's Music Fraternity 'Listens2theCall'

Jamaica's Music Fraternity 'Listens2theCall' The Jamaica Gleaner, February 22, 2010 In response to the crisis caused by the 7.0 earthquake in Haiti, Jamaica's music fraternity has come together in a show of solidarity for a historic recording titled Listen2theCall! More...

NYT: Countless Lost Limbs Alter Life in Haiti’s Ruins

Countless Lost Limbs Alter Life in Haiti’s Ruins, by Deborah Sontag, The New York Times, February 22, 2010 More...

How Long Will we be Willing to Sacrifice?

How Long Will we be Willing to Sacrifice? Comment by Gwen Wurm, The Miami Herald, February 22, 2010 The boy's name is Jeremy. He is 9 years old, about the same age as my son, the same mischievous smile, the same dancing light in his eyes. More...

Commission Starts Preparing Plans for Haiti's Rebirth

Commission Starts Preparing Plans for Haiti's Rebirth, by Henri E. Cauvin, The Washington Post, February 22, 2010 Here on the hills above Port-au-Prince, a vision for a very different capital city is taking shape. In a loft of architectural offices, a map of greater Port-au-Prince promises a reordering of the country's historic capital, overtaken long ago by sprawl and slums and struck last month by a cataclysmic earthquake. More...

Sunday, February 21, 2010

Cries for Help via Text Messages Are Used to Direct Aid to Haiti

Cries for Help via Text Messages Are Used to Direct Aid to Haiti, by Carmen Gentile, The New York Times, February 20, 2010 From his makeshift workstation, Ryan Bank spends hours sifting through thousands of electronic cries for help from Haitian earthquake victims, many detailing the horrors of dead family members, hunger and homelessness. More...

Behind the Scenes: Child’s-Eye View of Haiti

Behind the Scenes: Child’s-Eye View of Haiti, by Candice Chain, The New York Times, February 17, 2010 More...

Voices from Haiti

Voices from Haiti, BBC News, February 17, 2010 More...

Friday, February 19, 2010

Haiti Struggles to Keep up with Births

Haiti Struggles to Keep up with Births, by Kathleen McGrory, The Miami Herald, February 18, 2010 Gina Pierre laid on her back in the dusty tent, crying out in pain and clenching her older sister's hand. She was about to give birth to triplets.Two days earlier, the concrete walls of Pierre's home had collapsed around her. Now, there was no place to deliver her babies -- only the tent made from scrap metal and bed linens where she and her family were sleeping. More...

French Leader Cancels Haiti Debt

French Leader Cancels Haiti Debt, Announces Aid, by Trenton Daniel, The Miami Herald, February 17, 2010 French President Nicholas Sarkozy announced in a landmark visit Wednesday that his country would cancel Haiti’s $56 million in debt as it pledged hundreds of million in aid to help its former colony recover from a crippling quake that claimed more than 200,000 lives. More...

HAITI: Private Contractors 'Like Vultures Coming to Grab the Loot'

HAITI: Private Contractors 'Like Vultures Coming to Grab the Loot' by Anthony Fenton, Inter Press Service News Agency, February 19, 2010 Critics are concerned that private military contractors are positioning themselves at the centre of an emerging "shock doctrine" for earthquake-ravaged Haiti. Next month, a prominent umbrella organisation for private military and logistic corporations, the International Peace Operations Association (IPOA), is co-organising a "Haiti summit" which aims to bring together "leading officials" for "private consultations with attending contractors and investors" in Miami, Florida. More...

HAITI: Food Crisis Looms

HAITI: Food Crisis Looms, by Paul Virgo, Inter Press Service News Agency, February 18, 2010 Haiti's misery after last month's earthquake will be compounded by a food catastrophe if the international community continues to ignore the country's agricultural needs, the United Nations has warned. More...

Bring on the Red Helmet Brigade

Bring on the Red Helmet Brigade: The earthquake in Haiti has shown that the international community needs a UN-led team to co-ordinate disaster relief, by René Préval and Nicole Guedj, The Guardian, February 18, 2010 For more than a month, Haiti has been immersed in a climate of chaos and desolation. The first estimates reported more than 200,000 dead and 300,000 wounded. Hundreds of thousands of survivors have settled in improvised camps that may permanently be part of the island's landscape.
And yet, we have to be grateful for the solidarity of the international community that came in help to Haiti just a few hours after the disaster. More...

Rain Brings More Misery to Haiti Earthquake Survivors

Rain Brings More Misery to Haiti Earthquake Survivors, by Rory Carroll, The Guardian, February 19, 2010 Torrential rain has battered makeshift camps in Haiti, swamping earthquake survivors in mud and giving a menacing foretaste of the coming rainy season. Thursday's downpour soaked shelters made of bedsheets that are home to hundreds of thousands of people in Port-au-Prince and added urgency to the race to supply tents and plastic sheeting. More...

BBC: First Commercial Passenger Flight Lands in Haiti

First Commercial Passenger Flight Lands in Haiti, by BBC News, February 19, 2010 The first commercial passenger flight has arrived in Haiti since the devastating earthquake on 12 January that killed more than 200,000 people. The American Airlines Boeing 737 from Miami, carrying 136 passengers, landed at the capital, Port-au-Prince. More...

Haiti Sovereignty, Disaster relief, Rebuilding with Dignity

Ezili's HLLN 14-Points for the Voiceless in Haiti: Sovereignty, Disaster relief, Rebuilding with Dignity and Human Rights. More..

Al Jazeera: UN Record Appeal for Haiti Aid

The United Nations has launched its largest appeal ever for a natural disaster to help millions of Haitians displaced by last month's earthquake.

The appeal for nearly $1.5bn made on Thursday is almost three times the world body's initial request made on January 15 for a period of six months.

Donors have already pledged $673m, the UN said. More..

Thursday, February 18, 2010

HAITI: Food Crisis Looms

HAITI: Food Crisis Looms, by Paul Virgo, Inter Press News News Agency, February 18, 2010 Haiti's misery after last month's earthquake will be compounded by a food catastrophe if the international community continues to ignore the country's agricultural needs, the United Nations has warned. Despite pledges covering over 95 percent of the 575-million-dollar target set for the U.N.'s Flash Appeal to rebuild Haiti, where food insecurity was a massive problem even before the earthquake that killed over 200,000 people, there is a big shortfall in the campaign's agriculture component. More...

IDB: Estimating the Direct Economic Damage of the Earthquake in Haiti

Estimating the Direct Economic Damage of the Earthquake in Haiti, by Inter-American Development Bank, February 2010 Abstract-- This paper uses simple regression techniques to make an initial assessment of the monetary damages caused by the January 12, 2010 earthquake that struck Haiti. Damages are estimated for a disaster with both 200,000 and 250,000 total dead and missing (i.e., the range of mortality that the earthquake is estimated to have caused) using Haiti’s economic and demographic data. The base estimate is US$8.1bn for a death toll of 250,000, but for several reasons this may be a lower- bound estimate. An estimate of US$13.9bn for the same death toll is within statistical error. While the results are subject to many caveats, the implications of such an estimate are significant. Raising such a figure will require many donors—bilateral, multilateral and private. Hence excellent coordination of funding and execution will be the key to ensuring the efficient use of funds. More...

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

The Wall Street Jounral Reports: Haitian Diaspora Sees an Opening

Haitian Diaspora Sees an Opening


PORT-AU-PRINCE, Haiti—Five days after the earthquake devastated the Haitian capital, Claire-Marie Cyprien stepped into a terrifying scene at the General Hospital.

Young children and old men lay on thin, filthy mattresses. Some screamed, others were silent. The hospital's Haitian staff was barely in evidence. Volunteers from France and the U.S. rushed from patient to patient. More...

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

HAITI: U.N. Supports Move to Protect Heritage

HAITI: U.N. Supports Move to Protect Heritage, by A. D. McKenzie, Inter Press Service News Agency, February 16, 2010 The United Nations’ cultural agency, UNESCO, and the government of Haiti have joined forces to try to safeguard and protect the Caribbean nation’s artistic heritage in the wake of the Jan. 12 earthquake which destroyed not only countless lives but also many national art treasures. "We cannot talk about reconstruction without talking about our identity, our culture, our national patrimony," said Marie-Laurence Jocelyn Lassegue, Haiti’s minister for culture and communication, who later cried as she spoke with a supporter here Monday. More...

HAITI: Quake Victims Overwhelm Medical Capacity

HAITI: Quake Victims Overwhelm Medical Capacity, by Garry Pierre-Pierre, Inter Press Service News Agency, February 15, 2010 Seriously injured people continue to provide deep challenges to the city's barely functioning hospitals, weeks after a massive earthquake overwhelmed medical staff. More...

HAITI: Repairing the Third Rail – Part 3

HAITI: Repairing the Third Rail – Part 3, by William Fisher, Inter Press Service News Agency, February 15, 2010 As Haitians struggle to comprehend what has happened to their lives – and begin to try to put them back together – the United Nations is reaching out to "a vast and influential network" of about 60,000 voodoo priests. More...

Monday, February 15, 2010

Reinforcements: International Team of Cuban-Trained Doctors Arrives in Haiti

Reinforcements: International Team of Cuban-Trained Doctors Arrives in Haiti, MEDICC News (Medical Education Cooperation with Cuba), February 11, 2010 An international team of some 50 doctors trained at Havana's Latin American Medical School (ELAM) has arrived in Port-au-Prince to join Cuba's medical relief contingent in post-quake Haiti. Coming from a dozen countries, they are the first wave of ELAM graduates expected to number over 200 from 24 countries in the next week. More..

Sunday, February 14, 2010

BBC: Leogane--Haiti's 'neglected' Quake-Hit Town

Leogane: Haiti's 'neglected' Quake-Hit Town, by Christian Fraser, BBC News, February 12, 2010 It surrounds an altar that is still intact. Next door stand the remains of the funeral home decorated with brightly coloured washing. The line is tied between two broken pillars. A snapshot of normality where life is anything but. At the epicentre of the Haitian earthquake, 90% of the buildings are destroyed, a quarter of the town's population is dead or missing. And those who escaped are still fighting to survive. More...

NYT: For Haiti, They Are the Remake

For Haiti, They Are the Remake, by Jon Pareles, The New York Times, February 14, 2010When “We Are the World” was recorded in 1985, to benefit famine relief in Africa, Bob Dylan sang some pivotal lines with his usual wayward phrasing. Now Lil Wayne shows up in the same spot, using Auto-Tune on his vocal, in “We Are the World 25 for Haiti,” the remake to aid earthquake victims that had its video premiere on Friday night during the Olympics. More...

Haiti Mourns Its Dead

Haiti Mourns Its Dead, The New York Times, February 14, 2010

Angelina Jolie: 'Not the time' to Adopt from Haiti

Angelina Jolie: 'Not the time' to Adopt from Haiti, by Jacqui Goddard, Telegraph, February 13, 2010 The actress, visiting Port-au-Prince in her role as a goodwill ambassador for the UN High Commissioner for Refugees, added her voice to concerns expressed by aid agencies and the Haitian government about the risk of child trafficking and misguided actions by prospective adopters. More...

The Guardian: Art Destroyed in Haiti Earthquake

Haiti Earthquake: The earthquake that killed so many also demolished the island's galleries and destroyed thousands of paintings, The Guardian, February 13, 2010 Number 18 Rue Bouvreuil was once a mecca for lovers of Haitian art. Outside the Musee Galerie d'Art Nader, perched on a hillside overlooking Port-au-Prince, a sign greeted visitors. "On top of the town, top in the arts," it boasted. Inside, the walls were plastered with thousands of paintings recording nearly a century of Haitian history. More...

US-HAITI: The Failure of Aid – Part 2

US-HAITI: The Failure of Aid – Part 2, by William Fisher, Inter Press Service News Agency, February 13, 2010 The sick, injured and stressed people of Port au Prince are unlikely to be impressed by the small army of reconstruction contractors and development experts who are preparing to descend on Haiti. The reason? They've seen it all before. Over the years, the poorest country in the Western Hemisphere has seen billions of dollars in aid appear – and disappear. They have witnessed aid programmes characterised by start-stop-start, shaped largely by U.S. political ideologies. And they have seen the corrupt rulers of the country amass fortunes while ordinary people existed on one or two dollars a day. More...

Saturday, February 13, 2010

BBC: Quake-torn Haiti's Month of Struggle

Quake-torn Haiti's Month of Struggle, BBC News, February 13, 2010 The BBC's Nick Davis retraces his steps in Haiti's capital Port-au-Prince, a month after he arrived in the aftermath of the earthquake, and finds a stunned nation beginning to stagger to its feet. Thirty-one days ago I arrived in Haiti, just over 24 hours after the quake. Night started to fall as we came in to land, the only light that could be seen was from the runway, and the rest of Port-au-Prince was plunged into darkness. More...

US-HAITI: The Loan that Wasn't – Part 1

US-HAITI: The Loan that Wasn't – Part 1, by William Fisher, Inter Press Service News Agency (IPS), February 12, 2010 On the one-month anniversary of the devastating earthquake of Jan. 12, Haitians continue to perish from a variety of causes, including death by red tape: they fall between the cracks of a still poorly-coordinated aid effort. The physicians working in Haiti call these "the stupid deaths" – by which they mean avoidable. Yet amidst the chaos and suffering that inevitably accompanies natural disasters, there are people who are beginning to plan for Haiti's future. And, for many, their optimism is rooted in the miserable performance of international assistance in the past. Against that background, they say, they have nowhere to go but up. More...

Friday, February 12, 2010

Haiti will Not Die, President Rene Preval Insists

Haiti will Not Die, President Rene Preval Insists, BBC News, February 12, 2010 Haiti's President Rene Preval has vowed that his country will live on, during a day of national mourning held a month after the earthquake struck. He spoke at an emotional ceremony in the capital, Port-au-Prince, near the ruins of the National Palace. "Haiti will not die, Haiti must not die," he told mourners. At least 217,000 people died in the devastating earthquake on 12 January, which also left about 300,000 injured and one million homeless. More...

Thursday, February 11, 2010

Al Jazeera--Haiti: The Politics of Rebuilding

Haiti: The Politics of Rebuilding, by Al Jazeera, February 11, 2010 Just weeks after the earthquake that took more than 200,000 lives and devastated Haiti's capital city, a new normalcy is taking shape in Port-au-Prince. The shock of so much loss has barely worn off, but the mountains of rubble are slowly being cleared. And where landmarks like the national palace and the cathedral once towered a new architecture has appeared. More...

Noami Klein: Forgiveness for Haiti? We Should be Begging Theirs

Forgiveness for Haiti? We Should be Begging Theirs, by Naomi Klein, The Guardian, February 11, 2010 If we are to believe the G7 finance ministers, Haiti is on its way to getting something it has deserved for a very long time: full "forgiveness" of its foreign debt. In Port-au-Prince, Haitian economist Camille Chalmers has been watching these developments with cautious optimism. Debt cancellation is a good start, he told al-Jazeera English, but: "It's time to go much further. We have to talk about reparations and restitution for the devastating consequences of debt." In this telling, the whole idea that Haiti is a debtor needs to be abandoned. Haiti, he argues, is a creditor – and it is we, in the west, who are deeply in arrears. Our debt to Haiti stems from four main sources: slavery, the US occupation, dictatorship and climate change. More...

IPS News Agency--US-HAITI: Civil Rights Delegation Calls for Reparations

US-HAITI: Civil Rights Delegation Calls for Reparations, by Matthew Cardinale, Inter Press Service News Agency (IPS), February 11, 2010 A U.S. delegation to Haiti led by civil rights veteran Joe Beasley is calling for a 30-billion-dollar restitution payment by France to help Haiti rebuild after the devastating Jan. 12 earthquake, and the end of what Beasley refers to as an unofficial blockade of Haiti. Beasley, 73, was part of a six-person delegation that travelled to Haiti Jan. 22 to 27. The group spent two days in the Dominican Republic trying to gain official clearance to enter, Beasley said. After being unsuccessful, they decided to enter Haiti on their own and stayed for three days. More...

IPS News Agency--HAITI: Tensions Put on Hold as Dominican Republic Reaches Out

HAITI: Tensions Put on Hold as Dominican Republic Reaches Out, by Elizabeth Eames Roebling, Inter Press Service News Agency (IPS), February 11, 2010 A child amputee sits up in her hospital bed in Jacmel, Haiti. The Dominican Republic provided the first aid to the devastated southern city. Despite a history of often tense relations, the first nation to render assistance to Haiti after last month's devastating earthquake was its island neighbour, the Dominican Republic. More...

HAITI: Tarps, Not Tents, Please

HAITI: Tarps, Not Tents, Please, IRIN, February 11, 2010 With the rainy season just weeks away in Haiti, where over a million people are still living in the open, there is an urgent need for waterproof shelter best met by tarps rather than tents, according to aid workers. “Shipping in enough family tents for all the people in need would take months – too late to beat the rainy season [due to start late March],” international NGO CARE warned in a statement on 11 February. “By contrast, shipments of sturdy, reusable 6m-by-4m tarps (plastic sheeting) can arrive in Haiti in days or weeks. This will keep people dry while aid agencies start implementing a longer-term solution to the shelter crisis,” the statement added. More...

Democracy Now!: Actor, Activist Danny Glover: Former Haitian President Jean-Bertrand Aristide “Mystified” at US Resistance to His Return

Actor, Activist Danny Glover: Former Haitian President Jean-Bertrand Aristide “Mystified” at US Resistance to His Return, Democracy Now! February 10, 2010 Actor, activist and TransAfrica Forum chair Danny Glover joins us just after returning from South Africa, where he met with the ousted former Haitian president Jean-Bertrand Aristide. Glover reports Aristide wants to come back to his country five years after his ouster in a US-backed coup, but the Obama administration hasn’t dropped the US stance of blocking Aristide’s return to the Western hemisphere.More...

Democracy Now!: “Haiti: Killing the Dream”

“Haiti: Killing the Dream”: Excerpt of Documentary on Centuries of Western, Democracy Now! February 10, 2010 Subversion of Haitian Sovereignty To put the history of Haiti in context, we turn to the 1992 documentary Haiti: Killing the Dream produced by Hart and Dana Perry of Crowing Rooster Productions and narrated by Ossie Davis. In this excerpt, the film looks at the nearly twenty-year occupation of Haiti by US Marines beginning in 1915. More...

South America Leaders Hold Haiti Aid Summit

South America Leaders Hold Haiti Aid Summit, BBC News, February 9, 2010 South American leaders are holding a summit in the Ecuadorean capital, Quito, to discuss how to help Haiti recover from last month's earthquake.Haitian President Rene Preval is there to set out his country's needs and priorities to fellow leaders. More...

Battered Haitian Art Shines Through Devastation

Battered Haitian Art Shines Through Devastation, BBC News, February 11, 2010In Port-au-Prince, art is everywhere. In the teeming capital - even in the midst of the chaos and suffering wrought by last month's earthquake - you are never far from a painting, a mural or a sculpture. So it is no surprise that art, too, has suffered. More...

Conyers Wants Haiti Relief Official Demoted Over Diversity Deficit

Conyers Wants Haiti Relief Official Demoted Over Diversity Deficit, by Molly K. Hooper, The Hill, February 4, 2010 Rep. John Conyers Jr. (D-Mich.) has called on Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton to demote the official coordinating Haiti relief efforts for not having enough minority staffers. The House Judiciary Committee Chairman sent a letter to Clinton on Thursday after Rajiv Shah, administrator of the U.S. Agency for International Development, showed up at a meeting with the 42-member Congressional Black Caucus without any African American staffers in tow. More...

Haiti: Human Rights and Human Security

Haiti: Human Rights and Human Security, by Hope Lewis, IntLawGrrl, January 31, 2010"Earthquake! We see the earth shake! But the soul of the Haitian people, It will never break!" --Wyclef Jean The Fundamentals First things first. Like all IntLawGrrls and people around the world, I express my deepest condolences to the hundreds of thousands who lost loved ones in the Haiti earthquake of 12 January 2010. Our true feelings are beyond written expression. We—the transnational or global “community”—must continue to support the Haitian people in their struggle for survival against the natural and man-made challenges arrayed against them. More...

U.S. Paving Way to Rebuild Haiti

U.S. Paving Way to Rebuild Haiti, Jacqueline Charles, Miami Herald, February 11, 2010 The Obama administration is quietly advocating a plan to reconstruct Haiti that could involve a central role for former President Bill Clinton. The plan, designed by U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton's staff and presented to top Haitian officials in recent days, calls for the creation of an Interim Haiti Recovery Commission to oversee the ``urgent early recovery'' over the next 18 months. More...

Heavy Rains Raise Fears of Flooding in Haiti

Heavy Rains Raise Fears of Flooding in Haiti, by Trenton Daniel, Miami Herald, February 11, 2010 Several hours of rain in the Haitian capital Thursday morning raised fears of flooding and severe damage in a country that's still trying to recover from a 7.0 magnitude earthquake that happened exactly one month ago.

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

U.S. Firms Want Part in Haiti Cleanup

U.S. Firms Want Part in Haiti Cleanup, by MARTHA BRANNIGAN AND JACQUELINE CHARLES, Miami Herald, Februar 8, 2010 As Haiti begins digging out from under 60 million cubic meters of earthquake wreckage, U.S. firms have begun jockeying for a bonanza of cleanup work. More...

Doctor Says Vendor May Have Been in Rubble 27 Days

Doctor Says Vendor May Have Been in Rubble 27 Days, Associated Press, The New York Times, February 9, 2010 A rice vendor may have lived under the rubble of a flea market for 27 days with little more than water and possibly fruit, a doctor said Tuesday, in what would be a dramatic tale of survival four weeks after Haiti's devastating earthquake. More...

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

There's Real Hope From Haiti -- And It's Not What You'd Expect

There's Real Hope From Haiti -- And It's Not What You'd Expect, by John Hari, The Huffington Post, February 4, 2010 In the weeks after a disaster like the Haiti-quake, journalists always search for an upbeat twist to the tale. You know it by now -- the baby found alive after a week under wreckage. But this time, a shaft of light has parted the rubble and the corpses and the unshakable grief that could last for years. In the middle of Haiti's nightmare, a system that has kept hundreds of millions of people like them poor and broken might just have shown its first fracture. More...

HAITI: Funding Gap for Nutrition

HAITI: Funding Gap for Nutrition, IRIN, February 9, 2010 Donors have contributed just 6 percent of the funds sought for post-earthquake nutritional assistance to women and children in Haiti, according to the UN. A US$576.9-million flash appeal launched on 15 January is 92.9 percent funded overall, according to the UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA). But “some sectors of the relief effort have received little funding so far,” OCHA said in a 8 February statement. Aside from nutrition, these include security (6 percent funded) and agriculture (8 percent). More...

HAITI: Schools Slow to Reopen

HAITI: Schools Slow to Reopen, IRIN, February 5, 2010 A call by Haiti’s government for schools to reopen in areas spared by the earthquake has gone largely unheeded because of parents’ fears and financial woes. More...

HAITI: Planting Season in Peril

HAITI: Planting Season in Peril, IRIN, February 5, 2010 Ensuring seeds are sown during Haiti’s principal planting season – now just one month away – is key to averting a food crisis in the wake of January’s devastating earthquake, experts say. More...

US Must be Haiti's Watchdog

US Must be Haiti's Watchdog, by Mark Weisbrot, The Guardian, February 8, 2010 Last month actors and human rights advocates Danny Glover and Harry Belafonte, along with the Reverend Jesse Jackson sent a letter to Congress and the Obama administration calling attention to "serious mistakes that have unnecessarily delayed the delivery of medical supplies, water, and other life-saving materials." The letter was also signed by some 90 scholars and Haiti advocates. (Disclosure: I also added my signature). More...

Monday, February 8, 2010

Forced to Flee - New Short Video on Displacement in Haiti

Forced to Flee - New Short Video on Displacement in Haiti, by IRIN, February 5, 2010

G7 Nations Pledge Debt Relief for Quake-Hit Haiti

G7 Nations Pledge Debt Relief for Quake-Hit Haiti, BBC News, February 7, 2010 The world's leading industrialised nations have pledged to write off the debts that Haiti owes them, following a devastating earthquake last month. Canada's finance minister announced at a summit in Iqaluit, northern Canada, that Group of Seven countries planned to cancel Haiti's bilateral debts. More...

G7 to Write off Haiti Debt

G7 to Write off Haiti Debt, BBC News, February 7, 2010

Nigeria: Royal Father Tasks South East Governors Over

Nigeria: Royal Father Tasks South East Governors Over, by Emmanuel Ugwu, This Day (Lagos), January 30, 2010 As aid continues to pour into Haiti following the earthquake that devastated the only black nation in the western hemisphere, a traditional ruler in Abia State has called on the governors of the five states of the southeast and the Ohanaeze Ndigbo to rush aid in cash and kind to the Island. More...

Friday, February 5, 2010

UN Expert Calls for Urgent Cancellation of Haiti’s Remaining Multilateral Debt

UN Expert Calls for Urgent Cancellation of Haiti’s Remaining Multilateral Debt,Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights, February 4, 2010 The UN Independent Expert on foreign debt and human rights, Cephas Lumina, called Thursday for an immediate cancellation of Haiti’s debt with multilateral creditors, and the provision of unconditional grant-aid, “not new loans whatever the degree of concessionality.” The UN expert welcomed the recent announcement by the Paris Club - an informal group of 19 creditor countries - that its members would cancel the US$214 million debt owed to them by Haiti. However, he warned that “the decision is insufficient to assure the country’s sustainable recovery effort, given that the bulk of its external debt is owed to multilateral creditors.” More...

Relieve Haiti's debt burden--World Bank's Robert Zoellick

Relieve Haiti's Debt Burden, by Robert Zoellick, The Miami Herald, February 5, 2010 In the wake of the devastating earthquake there has been an outpouring of international support for Haiti. The first priority has been saving lives. That means getting water, food, shelter, medicines and other basic supplies to victims. But even as we stabilize the humanitarian response, we need to turn to the delivery of basic services and reconstruction. As we do so, we must learn the lessons of the past. More...

The West Owes Haiti a Bailout And it Would be a Hand-Back, not a Handout

The West Owes Haiti a Bailout. And it Would be a Hand-Back, not a Handout--
The Caribbean nation should be reimbursed for centuries of punitive treatment and brutality by the outside world, by Gary Younge, The Guardian, January 31, 2010 Last week started with a conference in Montreal, called by a group of governments and international agencies calling themselves Friends of Haiti, to discuss the long and short term needs of the recently devastated Caribbean nation. Even as corpses remained under the earthquake's rubble and the government operated out of a police station, the assembled "friends" would not commit to cancelling Haiti's $1bn debt. Instead they agreed to a 10-year plan with no details, and a commitment to meet again – when the bodies have been buried along with coverage of the country – sometime in the future. More...

Haiti's Road to Recovery

Haiti's Road to Recovery, by Jeffrey Sachs, The Guardian, January 31, 2010 The horrors of Haiti's earthquake continue to unfold. The quake itself killed perhaps 100,000 people. The inability to organise rapid relief is killing tens of thousands more. More than one million people are exposed to hunger and disease and, with the rain and hurricane seasons approaching, are vulnerable to further hazards. More...

The New York Times: Thinking About a New Haiti

Thinking About a New Haiti, Editorial, The New York Times, February 5, 2010 Three weeks after Haiti’s earthquake, the search for survivors has been called off, the TV crews are trickling home, and the celebrity telethon is over — usual signs that the floodwaters of compassion will be ebbing soon. The United States, Canada and other nations, meeting in Montreal last week, vowed that wouldn’t happen. They began to map out a 10-year recovery plan and set the stage for a big donor conference in March. More...

AP: Mia Farrow Criticizes Illegal Haiti Adoptions

Mia Farrow Criticizes Illegal Haiti Adoptions, by The Associated Press, The Washington Post, February 5, 2010 UNICEF goodwill ambassador Mia Farrow has criticized as "deplorable" attempts to take children out of Haiti illegally after last month's devastating earthquake. More...

Super Bowl, Earthquake Relief Efforts put Spotlight on Haitian American Presence in the NFL

Super Bowl, Earthquake Relief Efforts put Spotlight on Haitian American Presence in the NFL, by Amy Shipley, The Washington Post, February 5, 2010 Indianapolis Colts wide receiver Pierre Garçon carefully folded the Haitian flag into a bandanna and proudly put it -- instead of a Colts baseball cap -- on his head Tuesday as he held an obligatory meeting with the media in the lead-up to Sunday's Super Bowl. With the flag's emblem displayed across his forehead and television cameras running, Garçon hoped to inspire more help for his country. More...

Wyclef Set to Perform at BET Concert for Haiti Aid

Wyclef Set to Perform at BET Concert for Haiti Aid, The Washington Post, February 5, 2010 Sean "Diddy" Combs, Queen Latifah and Pharrell are set to host a two-hour concert and telethon to benefit earthquake relief efforts in Haiti. More...

Stars Raise Money for Haiti with New We Are the World Single

Stars Raise Money for Haiti with New We Are the World Single, The Guardian, February 2, 2010 Twenty-five years after USA for Africa released We Are the World, stars including Celine Dion, Akon and Pink have recorded a new version for Haiti. More..

Child Abduction Issue 'Distracts' from Relief - Haiti PM

Child Abduction Issue 'Distracts' from Relief - Haiti PM, BBC News, February 5, 2010 The Haitian prime minister has warned that the case of 10 US missionaries charged with child abduction is a "distraction" from earthquake recovery. More...

US Missionaries in Haiti Charged with Child Abduction

US Missionaries in Haiti Charged with Child Abduction, BBC News, February 5, 2010 Haiti has charged 10 US missionaries with child abduction and criminal conspiracy for allegedly trying to smuggle 33 children out of the country. More...

Regroup, Rebuild, Restore

Regroup, Rebuild, Restore,, by Robert Rotberg, The Miami Herald, February 5, 2010 Hundreds of thousands of Haitians are streaming out of Port-au-Prince, seeking shelter, food and family. Within the devastated capital city, massive emergency relief efforts continue. Rubble is being moved, tents and food are arriving and order is slowly being restored. Soon Port-au-Prince and Haiti will be stable, if not vibrant. More...

Haiti 'Orphans' Face a Life of Neglect and Pain

Haiti 'Orphans' Face a Life of Neglect and Pain: Haiti's earthquake has exposed a shadowy world of unregulated orphanages housing thousands of children both orphaned and abandoned, by SCOTT HIAASEN KATHLEEN McGRORY JACQUELINE CHARLES AND TRENTON DANIEL, The Miami Herald, February 5, 2010 More...

Miami Herald: US Commits to Recover all Bodies from Haiti Hotel

US Commits to Recover all Bodies from Haiti Hotel, by MIKE MELIA and MICHELLE FAUL
Associated Press Writer, Miami Herald, February 5, 2010 An hour before the earthquake struck, 19-year-old Britney Gengel phoned her mother in Massachusetts, bursting with joy: She had found her calling on a college trip to help orphans in Haiti. More...

Thursday, February 4, 2010

Haiti Quake Toll Tops 200000

Haiti Quake Toll Tops 200000, Sify, February 4, 2010 (DPA) The number of people killed in last month's earthquake in Haiti has topped 200000, Prime Minister Jean-Max Bellerive said More...

Afro American: Tax Write-off for Haiti Donations

Tax Write-off for Haiti Donations, Afro American, by Zenitha Prince, February 3, 2010) United States residents who donated to the relief effort in Haiti will be rewarded this spring when they file their income taxes. More...

Te-Ping Chen: A Second Chance for Clinton in Haiti

A Second Chance for Clinton in Haiti, by Te-Ping Chen,, February 3, 2010 As of this afternoon, it's official: former President Bill Clinton has been appointed the UN's chief aid and reconstruction coordinator for Haiti. UN officials are crossing their fingers that Clint... Read more of this post, ...

New York Times: Haiti Reconstruction Moves Toward Transitional Shelters

Haiti Reconstruction Moves Toward Transitional Shelters, The New York Times, February 3, 2010 Aid groups in Haiti began to de-emphasize tents in favor of do-it-yourself housing with tarpaulins at first, followed by lumber. More...

As First Aid Mission Fails, What Next For Haiti?--Danny Schechter

As First Aid Mission Fails, What Next For Haiti? by Danny Schechter, The Huffington Post, February 3, 2010 Haiti is already fading from the headlines. The desperation of the population in what was called the "rescue" phase of the relief effort is giving way to 'silver-lining" talk of recovery and rebuilding. More...

CNN: State Department Targets More Funds to Fight child Trafficking in Haiti

State Department Targets More Funds to Fight child Trafficking in Haiti, by CNN, February 3, 2010 The US State Department is increasing funds available to combat child trafficking in Haiti, where children are at risk. More...

Pace of Giving Slows a Bit for Haiti Relief Effort

Pace of Giving Slows a Bit for Haiti Relief Effort, by David Crary, The Washington Post, February 3, 2010 Graphic shows selection of private non-profit organizations and their donated monetary totals for Haiti earthquake relief efforts More...

Washington Post: Bill Clinton to Coordinate Haiti Aid Efforts

Bill Clinton to Coordinate Haiti Aid Efforts, by Patrick Worsnip, The Washington Post, February 4, 2010 The United Nations on Wednesday assigned former US President Bill Clinton, now UN special envoy to Haiti, More...

David Furnish: In Rebuilding Haiti, Fighting HIV/AIDS Must be a Top Priority

In Rebuilding Haiti, Fighting HIV/AIDS Must be a Top Priority, by David Furnish, The
Huffington Post
, February 3, 2010 The recent earthquake in Haiti reminds us of the fragility of human life. In one instant, an entire city can be reduced to rubble, taking the lives of tens ...More...

Washington Post: Clinton Regrets Actions of Americans Held in Haiti

Clinton Regrets Actions of Americans Held in Haiti, by MATTHEW LEE, AP, The Washington Post, February 4, 2010 Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton says the attempt to take undocumented children out of Haiti by 10 detained ... More...

USA TODAY: Haiti's Government Struggles for Control Amid Confusion

Haiti's Government Struggles for Control Amid Confusion, by John Moore, Getty Images by Ken Dilanian, USA Today, USA TODAY To find Haiti's lawmakers, drive to the police academy... More...

Wall Street Journal: Quake Exposes Haiti's 'Orphan' Issue

Quake Exposes Haiti's 'Orphan' Issue, by GAUTHIER-VILLARS, JOEL MILLMAN and MIRIAM JORDAN, The Wall Street Journal, February 4, 2010 Before last month, Haiti already had 380000 children in orphanages. That was certain to grow in the aftermath of the Jan. 12 quake,....More...

Boston Globe: 214-Foot Ship Packed to the Gunwales with Aid for Haiti

214-Foot Ship Packed to the Gunwales with Aid for Haiti, David Abel,
Boston Globe, February 4, 2010 Word began to make its way around town about a week ago that a large boat would be leaving Boston with relief supplies for Haiti. More...

GHC Fellows: Rebuilding a Stronger Haiti

Rebuilding a Stronger Haiti — GHC Fellows
by Abengtson, Global Health Corps, February 3, 2010
Check out Paul Farmer, co-founder of GHC partner Partners In Health's, recent congressional testimony on the opportunity that the horrific tragedy in Haiti represents to rebuild a stronger, more stable and more prosperous Haiti. More...

American Red Cross--Earthquake in Haiti: Top-Line Facts

Earthquake in Haiti: Top-Line Facts, American Red Cross Disaster,February 4, 2010 Because of the generosity of donors, people in Haiti will receive more than immediate relief — they will receive resources, support and training from the Red Cross that will help them recover and rebuild in the years ahead. More...

Naomi Campbell to Stage Runway Show for Haiti

Naomi Campbell to Stage Runway Show for Haiti at New York Fashion, by Sarah Cristobal, Stylelist, February 4, 2010 Naomi Campbell is planning a major Fashion Week runway show to benefit earthquake recovery efforts in Haiti -- and the public is invited. More...

Wednesday, February 3, 2010

Venezuela’s Aid to Haiti, by Embassy of the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela to the United States

Venezuela’s Aid to Haiti, by Embassy of the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela to the United States

Analysis: Is Haiti's René Préval buckling under?

Anger over president's weak response to quake threatens to further threaten reeling nation

Crisis thrusts greatness on leaders. But it can also be merciless in exposing weakness.

Since Haiti's catastrophic earthquake struck Jan. 12, President René Préval – once welcomed for his calm and quiet manner – became a silent shadow on the chaotic landscape, convincing many Haitians they are alone and adrift

Feet in 2 Worlds Reports:Authorities Warn Undocumented Immigrants From Haiti About TPS Scams

Authorities Warn Undocumented Immigrants From Haiti About TPS Scams

As many as 200,000 undocumented Haitians could apply for Temporary Protected Status, granted by the Obama administration after the January 12th earthquake that devastated Port-au-Prince and environs. But authorities are warning against scammers who are already preying on unwitting –or desperate– applicants.

Helping Haiti with Corporate Social Responsibility Initiatives

Cell Phone Providers Helping Haiti with Corporate Social Responsibility Initiatives

When you think about corporate social responsibility initiatives, well thought out plans involving community outreach and the environment come to mind. However, this is not always the case. The corporate community will step up their corporate social responsibility initiatives when unexpected natural disasters arise. One such calamity is the recent devastation in the aftermath of the earthquake in Haiti. In the wake of this disaster, the major cell phone companies are doing their part in a variety of ways.

UNESCO calls for suspending trade of Haitian artworks

UNESCO calls for suspending trade of Haitian artworks

PARIS, Feb. 1 (Xinhua) -- Director-General of the UN Educational, Scientific, and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) Irina Bokova has written to UN chief Ban Ki-moon calling for a suspension of trading in Haitian artworks to prevent the loss of the country's cultural heritage, said a UNESCO statement on Monday.

Bokova said she hoped UN Under-Secretary-General and Emergency Relief Coordinator John Holmes, organizations coordinating relief work in Haiti, and the UN peacekeeping mission could join hands in doing what they can to protect those places where Haitian artworks are kept, such as museums, galleries and churches. More..

Haiti and Black History Month

Haiti crisis gives 'different colour' to Black History Month: Montreal organizers

MONTREAL – The organizers of Black History Month unveiled their program of events Monday and there’s a little of everything: Song, dance, film, literature and even language lessons.

This is the 19th installment of Black History Month in Montreal, an opportunity to celebrate the accomplishments of blacks in the city and the province. More

The Chrisitan Science Monitor Reports: Haiti: US ramps up 'cash for work' to create jobs, help recovery

Haiti: US ramps up 'cash for work' to create jobs, help recovery
While relief efforts involving food, water, and health services continue in Haiti, the United States is also ramping up support for “cash for work” programs designed to get Haitians involved in earthquake clean-up, put cash in pockets, and help get Haiti’s private sector moving again.More..

The New York Times Reports : Coupons easing Chaos in Haiti's Food Distribution

Coupons Ease Chaos in Haiti's Food Distribution
PORT-AU-PRINCE, Haiti — Four days into a new food distribution program from the United Nations that aims to repair a faltering aid effort, paper coupons that can be redeemed for 55 pounds of rice have become more valuable than Haitian money. More.

Scientists say Haiti could be hit by another earthquake soon

Scientists say Haiti could be hit by another earthquake soon.

The chance of another big earthquake in Haiti in the near future is great enough that people in Port-au-Prince should sleep in tents — not even in buildings that survived the Jan. 12 quake apparently unscathed, geologists said Monday. More...

Voice of America Reports: Parents Reclaim Children in Haiti

Haitian Authorities Question US Missionaries Accused of Child Trafficking
A judge in Haiti has questioned a group of American Baptist missionaries accused of trying to take 33 Haitian children out of the earthquake-shattered country without proper authorization.

US Marines in Haiti: Back to colonialism

US Marines in Haiti: Back to colonialism
27 January 2010

The US media’s coverage of the catastrophe in Haiti has increasingly included articles and broadcast reports extolling the supposed humanitarian role of US soldiers and Marines in the Caribbean country. They generally describe how “combat-hardened” veterans of Iraq and Afghanistan are lending a helping hand to the survivors of the earthquake.

Some of this reporting seems aimed at countering growing international criticism of the US militarization of the response to the Haitian disaster, which has given priority to rushing in combat-equipped troops over the provision of medical supplies, food and water desperately needed to save lives.

Miami Herald Reports: President René Préval focused on Managing Haiti

Haiti's President René Préval Quietly Focuses on Managing Country

Haiti President René Préval had hoped the defining moment of his five-year reign over the crippled nation of Haiti would be this: building new roads, creating a stronger government and stabilizing the political landscape.

But in the aftermath of last month's earthquake, his moment is now, as he seeks to lead Haiti out of its most daunting disaster before his presidential terms ends Feb. 7, 2010. Read More..

Tuesday, February 2, 2010

UN News Center Reports: Women's Role in Haiti's Recovery

Women must play active role in Haiti’s recovery – UN experts

1 February 2010 – Women must be given a key role in all aspects of the emergency relief effort in earthquake-ravaged Haiti for it to be effective and to protect the human rights of the most vulnerable, a United Nations committee warned today.

“The needs and capabilities of women must be taken into consideration in all sectors and clusters of the emergency response, as the role of women in early recovery is critical to effective implementation and long term sustainability,” said Naéla Mohamed Gabr, who heads the Committee on the Elimination of Discrimination against Women (CEDAW). More..

Americans may face trial in US for Haiti adoption Attempt

Haitian officials insist trial of Baptists needed to send strong message against child trafficking

Haitian and US officials are considering a trial in the United States for 10 Americans who were arrested while trying to bus ­children out of Haiti without documents or permission.

The aborted Baptist "rescue mission" has become a big distraction for a crippled government trying to provide basic life support to millions of earthquake survivors. Haiti's courts and justice ministry were destroyed in the disaster, which also killed many judicial officials.

UNICEF safety measures for Children in Haiti

UNICEF aims to bring sense of stability and safety to children after quake

[UNICEF is bringing stability and safety to children after the 12 January earthquake in Haiti]-photo from UN News Center

UNICEF is bringing stability and safety to children after the 12 January earthquake in Haiti
1 February 2010 – Where did you sleep last night? Where did you eat? What does your neighbourhood look like? These are some of the questions United Nations staff are asking hundreds of children in Haiti after launching a new programme to keep track of children orphaned or separated from their families by the earthquake.

Since last week, the UN Children’s Fund (UNICEF) and its partners have identified and registered some 200 unaccompanied children found in orphanages and wandering in neighbourhoods of Port-au-Prince.

Haiti Universities Feel Strain After Earthquake

HAITI: Universities Feel Strain After Earthquake
By Garry Pierre-Pierre*

PORT-AU-PRINCE, Feb 1, 2010 (IPS) - Astride Auguste was late for an exam at Quiskeya University on that fateful Tuesday, Jan. 12, when the earthquake - or "the event", as Haitians have come to call it - struck this capital city.

Auguste, an undergraduate student in international affairs and management, was near the campus when she felt the earth shake beneath her. She bounced a few times and eventually regained her composure. A few miles away, many of her fellow students had died after most of the buildings collapsed.

"I can't believe it," said a visibly shaken Auguste, days after the disaster. "This is a nightmare. The year has been lost. I don't know what I am going to do now." More

UNDP Reports: Haiti Cash-for-Work program expands

Haiti cash-for-work project expands; more than 30,000 now employed

Global support from donors increases; Democratic Republic of Congo, Ghana and others provide support

Port-au-Prince ― Following a period of preparation that involved securing equipment and setting up systems of recruitment and payment, the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) Cash-for-Work initiative in Haiti is expanding rapidly. The number of workers doubled over the weekend to 31,885 and is expected to double by the end of the week.

“Expansion at first was constrained by the need to coordinate with local authorities and ensure that systems were in place for things like payments and for the transparent and accountable management of the finances,” said UNDP Country Director Eric Overvest.

Hispanic Media for Haiti

Hispanic Media Outreach for Haiti Unprecedented

The Associated Press
Monday, February 1, 2010; 7:00 AM

MIAMI -- As horrific images of Haiti flashed across the screens, murmurs of recognition floated through the audience at Univision Network's live celebrity telethon, many people nodding as they recalled disasters in their native countries.

UN warns of Volatility with Food Convoy Attacks

Haiti Food Convoy Attacked: UN warns of volatility
The Associated Press
Tuesday, February 2, 2010; 2:23 PM

PORT-AU-PRINCE, Haiti -- Twenty armed men blocked a road and tried to hijack a convoy of food for earthquake victims, but were driven off by police gunfire, U.N. officials said Tuesday as they warned of security problems in a still-desperate nation.

The Washington Post Reports; Florida Medical Teams to Help Haiti

Medical Teams in Florida ramp up to care for Haitians

TAMPA -- Joseph Perno's cellphone started buzzing at 9 a.m. Monday. The county medical coordinator told him to stay sharp. A C-130 cargo plane, carrying 22 seriously injured Haitians, would be arriving at Tampa International Airport that night.

Africa: Haiti's Debt in Context

AfricaFocus Bulletin
Feb 2, 2010 (100202)
(Reposted from sources cited below)

Editor's Note

"Haiti was the only country in which the ex-slaves themselves were
expected to pay a foreign government [France] for their liberty [in
1804]. By 1900, it was spending 80% of its national budget on
repayments. ... In 1947, Haiti finally paid off the original
reparations, plus interest. Doing so left it destitute, corrupt,
disastrously lacking in investment and politically volatile." -
historian Alex von Tunzelmann, in London Sunday Times, May 17, 2009

In June 2009 $1.2 billion of Haiti's modern external debt, dating
to the Duvalier dictatorship and subsequent international
structural adjustment programs, was cancelled. But even after this,
Haiti remained saddled with a debt of more than $1 billion. Now
France has pledged to cancel its bilateral debt to Haiti, and the
IMF has said it will cancel its own debt, including a new loan for
$100 million being made available after the earthquake.
Cancellation of all the country's external debt, analysts say, is
one of the minimal conditions necessary for that country's

This AfricaFocus Bulletin contains a letter from 80 U.S.
organizations to U.S. Treasury Secretary Geithner calling for
cancellation of Haiti's debt, a background paper on Haiti's debt by
Jubilee USA, and a brief description by historian Alex von
Tunzelmann on the historical origin of Haiti's debt.

Another AfricaFocus Bulletin sent out today contains commentary on
the need for African and international support for Haiti's

For more on Haiti's debt, see particularly / direct URL:

Also see Sophie Perchellet, Éric Toussaint, "Grants to Repay an
Odious Debt?" January 18, 2010

For previous AfricaFocus Bulletin's on the issue of African and
other developing country debt, see

++++++++++++++++++++++end editor's note+++++++++++++++++++++++

Organizations Unite to Tell Treasury Secretary Geithner: Cancel
Haiti's Debt Now and No More Debt for Disaster

January 26, 2010

Today 80 US religious denominations, human rights groups, and
development agencies including the Jubilee USA Network, the
AFL-CIO, the ONE Campaign and TransAfrica Forum sent a letter to US
Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner, urging him to negotiate
immediate debt cancellation for Haiti by the international
financial institutions.

As the International Monetary Fund prepares to meet on Wednesday to
vote to approve a $100 million emergency loan for Haiti and discuss
possible debt cancellation, the groups urge the United States use
its leadership to ensure that Haiti's existing debt be cancelled
definitively and that any new money comes in the form of grants,
not loans.

January 26, 2010

The Honorable Timothy Geithner Secretary of the Treasury

Dear Mr. Secretary:

We are grateful for the US government's efforts to date to mobilize
emergency assistance for disaster relief in Haiti.

We are writing today to bring to your attention two specific steps
that we believe should be a part of our government's response to
the Haiti crisis: (1) support for the cancellation of Haiti's
remaining debts; and (2) ensuring that any disaster relief
assistance be provided as grants rather than loans.

First, as you know, in June 2009 Haiti secured $1.2 billion in debt
cancellation from its major creditors when it reached completion
point in the Heavily Indebted Poor Countries (HIPC) Initiative.
This was a critical step forward. But even after this relief, Haiti
remains saddled with a debt of more than $1 billion.

More than half of Haiti's outstanding debt is owed to the Inter
American Development Bank (IDB) ($442 million), the International
Monetary Fund (IMF) ($165 million), and the World Bank's
International Development Association (IDA) ($39 million) --
institutions where our government has a significant voice on the
Executive Board. Haiti is projected to pay at least $100 million in
debt payments to these institutions over the next five years unless
these debts are cancelled -- and the earthquake now has devastated
Haiti's capacity to generate sufficient export revenue to be able
to afford these payments.

We have welcomed statements from IMF and IDB officials of their
intentions to consider cancellation of Haiti's remaining debt. We
urge you to use your voice and vote on the Executive Boards of the
IDB, IMF, and World Bank to secure cancellation of Haiti's
remaining debts to these institutions. While arrangements are
worked out for cancellation, we urge you to call for a moratorium
for debt service payments from Haiti to these institutions, without
interest accruing.

Second, we welcome the pledges of additional financial assistance
from international governments and international financial
institutions, as we acknowledge that all available resources must
be delivered to Haiti in as timely a manner as possible. However,
we urge that all support be in the form of grants instead of loans.

While we were initially concerned when the International Monetary
Fund announced its intention to provide $100 million in loan
assistance as part of an existing loan agreement that includes some
onerous conditions, we welcomed IMF Managing Director Dominique
Strauss-Kahn's recent promise that the IMF intends to work to
cancel all of Haiti's debt including this new loan. We urge you to
work with the IMF to ensure that all assistance, including the new
IMF loan, is provided on grant terms and without requirements of
existing loans.

We thank you for your consideration of our views on this critical


[for list of signatory organizations see]

Roadmap to Recovery

Guiding Haiti's Roadmap to Recovery with Human Rights

By Monika Kalra Varma and Kerry Kennedy, February 1, 2010

Kerry Kennedy is president and founder of the Robert F. Kennedy
Center for Justice and Human Rights. Monika Kalra Varma is director
of the RFK Center for Human Rights. /

Overwhelmed by sadness, empathy and disbelief, the world's eyes are
focused on the rescue and relief efforts for those in Haiti.
However, many who have worked in Haiti fear that a preventable
long-term disaster lies on the horizon if international
interventions don't break with past patterns. As international aid
begins to pour into Haiti, we have a brief moment to break with
past mistakes and bring real change to the country. More..

PIH co-founder Paul Farmer testifies at Senate Foreign Relations Comittee

Testimony of Dr. Paul Farmer to the US Senate Committee on Foreign Relations

27 January 2010

Thank you for inviting me to testify today before the Senate Committee on Foreign Relations. I speak as the U.N. Deputy Special Envoy for Haiti—President Clinton, as you know, is the Special Envoy—and also as a physician and teacher from Harvard who has worked for over twenty-five years in rural Haiti. Today, my hope is to do justice to Haiti not by chronicling the events of the past two weeks, which are well known to you, but by attesting to the possibility of hope for the country, and of the importance of meaningful investment and sustainable development in Haiti.

That said, I will not pretend that hope is not at times difficult to muster.

As I was flying from Port-au-Prince to Montreal on Monday, headed to a conference on coordinating responses to the massive earthquake, I did the painful math in my head and counted close to fifty colleagues, friends, and family members who had lost their lives in the space of a minute.

The afternoon of the earthquake, several of my colleagues from Partners In Health and the UN, were, ironically, in Port-au-Prince for a meeting about disaster risk reduction. Partners In Health, through its Haitian sister organization, provides health care to the rural poor. By focusing on training and employing local talent, we have grown a great deal over the years. We are currently serving a population of well over 1.2 million and count about five thousand employees, most of them community health workers.


Africa Solidarity with Haiti

AfricaFocus Bulletin Reports:

Feb 2, 2010 (100202)
(Reposted from sources cited below)

Editor's Note

"Despite $402 million pledged to support the Haitian government's
Economic Recovery Program [in April 2009] ... as of yesterday we
estimate that 85% of the pledges made last year remain undisbursed.
... [we don't need more pledges] We need a reconstruction fund
that is large, managed transparently, creates jobs for Haitians,
and grows the Haitian economy. We need a reconstruction plan that
uses a pro-poor, rights-based approach far different from the
charity and failed development approaches that have marred
interactions between Haiti and much of the rest of the world for
the better part of two centuries." - Dr. Paul Farmer, U.N. Deputy
Special Envoy for Haiti January 27, 2010

As international attention to Haiti begins to fade (see, relief efforts
continue, but reconstruction has hardly begun. Both African
governments and African non-governmental leaders have launched
fund-raising efforts for these long-term needs. But, as veteran
Partners in Health physician and other commentators note, the
danger is that past dysfunctional patterns of international
intervention will be repeated.

As Yash Tandon and other analysts warned in last week's issue of
Pambazuka News (, what has
happened and may happen in Haiti is "a microcosm of the crisis of
development." It will be a test of capacity to respond not just to
natural disaster, but to the man-made disasters that set the
context and the capacity to respond to natural disasters.

This AfricaFocus Bulletin contains an appeal from the new "Africa
for Haiti" coalition, excerpts from Dr. Farmer's testimony to the
U.S. Senate, and a commentary by Monika Kalra Varma and Kerry
Kennedy, of the RFK Center for Human Rights.

Another AfricaFocus Bulletin sent out today focuses on the urgent
need to cancel Haiti's debt, as well as the role that debt has
played in keeping Haiti in poverty for over two centuries.

Among other commentaries and background on Haitian reconstruction:

Amy Wilentz, "The Haiti Haters"

Letter to PJ Patterson, Caricom's representative to the Montreal
Conference on Haiti, by Norman Girvan

Note by Jocelyn McCalla, Senior Advisor, Bureau of Haiti's Special
Envoy to the UN, former Executive Director, National Coalition for
Haitian Rights / direct URL:

Official Website of Montreal Ministerial Conference on Haiti,
January 25, 2010 /
direct URL:

Institute for Justice and Democracy in Haiti

Center for Economic and Policy Research Reports: The US game in Latin America

The US game in Latin America

By Mark Weisbrot
When I write about US foreign policy in places such as Haiti or Honduras, I often get responses from people who find it difficult to believe that the US government would care enough about these countries to try and control or topple their governments. These are small, poor countries with little in the way of resources or markets. Why should Washington policymakers care who runs them?

Unfortunately they do care. A lot. They care enough about Haiti to have overthrown the elected president Jean-Bertrand Aristide not once, but twice. The first time, in 1991, it was done covertly. We only found out after the fact that the people who led the coup were paid by the US Central Intelligence Agency. And then Emmanuel Constant, the leader of the most notorious death squad there – which killed thousands of Aristide's supporters after the coup – told CBS News that he, too, was funded by the CIA. More...

Monday, February 1, 2010

DC Caribbean Promoters for Haiti Fundraiser Event February 4th

DC Caribbean Promoters for Haiti
invite you to
Haiti We Care Benefit

Thursday, February 4th 2010
5pm till
Zanzibar on the Waterfront
700 SW Water St SW
Washington, DC


Live Entertainment by
Image Band, Rafrechi Haitian Band
Music by Local DJs - Sprang Int'l, Pumpstation, DJ Superslice

Yele Haiti - CARE International, Medical Teams International

Africa Considers Resettling Haitians

Africa mulls resettling Haitians
The African Union has agreed to consider a proposal to resettle thousands of Haitians left homeless by a 7.0 magnitude earthquake, and possibly create a state for them in Africa.

Haiti Banks Begin To Reopen and Money Trickles In

NYDaily News Reports:
Money slowly trickling into Port-au-Prince, Haiti as banks and wire transfer offices begin to reopen

A lifeline of cash is finally moving - in fits and starts - from Haitians in New York to family back home.

Wire transfer offices and banks began to reopen last week amid destroyed storefronts, drawing massive lines of people desperate for money promised by relatives.

The Washington Post Reports: Food Distribution Focuses on Women

Chaos eases as Food Lines Focus on Women

The Associated Press
Sunday, January 31, 2010; 9:43 PM

PORT-AU-PRINCE, Haiti -- The 79-year-old woman with a 55-pound bag of rice perched on her head gingerly descended concrete steps Sunday and passed it off to her daughter-in-law - who quickly disappeared behind the faded leopard-print sheets that are the walls of their makeshift home on the crowded turf of Haiti's National Stadium.

New York Times Reports: Thousands Trying to Flee Haiti

Escaping the Capital as Help is Arriving

PORT-AU-PRINCE, Haiti — Wharf Jérémie on this city’s edge was all chaos and destruction on Monday, with upturned shipping containers lying in the sea and pigs foraging on piles of refuse. But for a thousand or more seeking a ride on rickety boats away from the ruined capital, the wharf was a means to something hopeful: escape.

Tent City LifeStyles in Haiti

The Los Angeles Times-
A day in the life of a Haiti tent city

Reporting from Port-Au-Prince, Haiti - Morning arrives with the melody of the Haitian streets.

A rooster crows, and two street preachers stand near the gates of a new tent city. They are both women, both wearing black kerchiefs over their hair. One shouts hoarsely into a bullhorn while the other sings sweetly from a "singing bible," a book of hymns. The sounds clash and blend, grate and harmonize, and the result is, incongruously, achingly beautiful, a sort of Haitian hip-hop gospel.

American Aid Workers Being Detained in Haiti

Americans Detained In Haiti Await Fate

PORT-AU-PRINCE, Haiti—The 10 U.S. citizens detained in Haiti after allegedly trying to whisk more than 30 children out of the earthquake-ravaged country could be charged with kidnapping and child trafficking, Haiti police and judicial officials said Sunday.

Through statements to the press and online, the Americans and the missionary group sponsoring them have denied wrongdoing.

Bishops Call for Long Term US Strategy to aid Haiti

U.S. bishops call for a long-term strategy in Haiti to reduce poverty

By Catholic News Service

WASHINGTON - The United States needs “a long-term coherent strategy for recovery, development and poverty reduction in Haiti,” said the chairman of the U.S. bishops’ Committee on International Justice and Peace in a Jan. 26 letter to officials in the Obama administration.

Ethiopian Review: Analysis on Canceling Haiti's Debt

Should we cancel Haiti's Debt

USA Today Reports: Voucher System to Prevent Riots in Haiti

U.N. tries voucher system to prevent food riots in Haiti
By Ken Dilanian, USA TODAY
PORT-AU-PRINCE, Haiti — Haitians waiting in lines under a new U.N. voucher system for food both praised and criticized the method, which is supposed to stop fights in food lines.

Haitian Leadership Questioned after Quake

New York Times-In Quake’s Wake, Haiti Faces Leadership Void

PORT-AU-PRINCE, Haiti — The journalists had assembled and the cameras were rolling. Seated at center stage were the American ambassador and the American general in charge of the United States troops deployed here. At the back of the room, wearing blue jeans and a somber expression, stood President René Préval, half-listening to the updates on efforts to help Haiti recover from its devastating earthquake while scanning his cellphone for messages. Then he wandered away without a word.

U.S. Military Will Resume Flying Haitians into Florida after a Five Day Suspension

Washington Post-"U.S.Military will Resume Flying Haitian Earthquake Victims to Florida"
PORT-AU-PRINCE, HAITI -- The U.S. military will resume flying severely injured Haitian earthquake victims out of the country, ending a dispute over hospital costs and capacity that had stopped such flights.

Data on Cuban Medical Operations in Haiti

The Cuban International Press Center had provided updated figures of the medical aid Cuba has provided to Haiti.

Havana, Jan 25, (RHC/GI).- Up-to date figures published by the Cuban International Press Center show that there are currently 417 Cuban health professionals providing medical care in Haiti. 240 resident interns including 5th year Haitian medical students are also working alongside the doctors. More.