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EU's Haiti relief programme is underway

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EU's Haiti relief programme is underway


Despite Haiti’s broken infrastructure continuing to hamper the relief programme, the UN says aid is now getting through.

But this is a massive international effort and the EU is contributing with its own relief programme.
Luis Carballo, Euronews’s special correspondent in Haiti has been talking to the bloc’s representative.

Luis Carballo:
“I’m joined by Vicente Raimundo who’s the European Union’s coordinator of humanitarian aid. He arrived 12 hours after the earthquake struck and can explain what have been the priorities.”

Vicente Raimundo:
“Our first task has been to try to understand the extent of the catastrophe because at the beginning all communications were cut. We had to know whether we were facing an average disaster or something far bigger.
Once it was understood that we were facing a huge problem, then we could mobilise our resources.
The very first day, three million euros were allocated in order to fund rescue operations involving the setting up of such things as mobile hospitals and food and water distribution. Those were the priorities in the first four days.”

Luis Carballo:
“We have seen for ourselves the many problems stopping food distribution but it seems things are changing. Yesterday for example there was a massive hand out.”

Vicente Raimundo:
“In fact yesterday the official figures show that sufficient food to feed 96,500 people was distributed. But we are still talking about emergency rations, such as high energy biscuits.
It’s not the kind of quality food people deserve and are waiting for, but it is food to keep them alive and healthy.”

Luis Carballo:
“Right now, Port-au-Prince is a divided city- those areas which before were more or less dangerous are still dangerous and those where one can be more or less safe.”

Vicente Raimundo:
“As you just said it’s complicated – those dangerous districts are still dangerous, and more so now, but those areas which were OK and acceptable, remain so.
But what I want to make clear is that no food distribution has been significantly hindered – there have been incidents but they’ve been rare and isolated.”

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