October 23, 2021

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Haiti earthquake – live: 7.2-magnitude shock leaves 227 dead as officials fear fatalities could stretch to thousands

Haitians deal with the immediate aftermath of devastating earthquake

A major earthquake struck western Haiti on Saturday morning and was felt across the Caribbean.

Authorities report that at least 227 people have been confirmed dead and hundreds more are wounded or missing. The prime minister has declared a state of emergency.

People fled their homes for fear that buildings might collapse when the magnitude 7.2 tremor struck at approximately 8.30am.

A 5.2 magnitude aftershock was also recorded about 20 minutes after the initial shaking, several smaller shocks followed.

The epicentre of the quake was 8km (5 miles) from the town of Petit Trou de Nippes, about 150km west of the capital Port-au-Prince. Two hotels in the town of Les Cayes have collapsed and hospitals are overwhelmed.

Haiti is still recovering from a devastating earthquake in 2010 much nearer the densely populated capital that is believed to have killed as many as 300,000 people.

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US Embassy ‘ready to assist’

Oliver O’Connell14 August 2021 22:10

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People looking at destroyed houses in the aftermath of the quake in Jeremie, southwest Haiti.

(AFP via Getty Images)

Oliver O’Connell14 August 2021 21:55

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House Haiti Caucus vows action

Florida Democratic Congresswoman Val Demings is a co-chair of House Haiti Caucus with representatives Yvette Clarke (NY), Andy Levin (MI), and Ayanna Pressley (MA).

She tweeted this statement: “[I] will work with my Haiti Caucus Co-Chairs to ensure Haitians have the full support of the US government and regional allies during these challenging times.”

Oliver O’Connell14 August 2021 21:42

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Petit Pas Hotel in the town of Les Cayes was damaged in the earthquake

(AP)

Oliver O’Connell14 August 2021 21:32

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Statement by President Joe Biden on Haiti

Joe Biden has released a statement on the devastation in Haiti.

In what is already a challenging time for the people of Haiti, I am saddened by the devastating earthquake that occurred in Saint-Louis du Sud, Haiti this morning. We send our deepest condolences to all those who lost a loved one or saw their homes and businesses destroyed.

I have authorized an immediate US response and named USAID Administrator Samantha Power as the senior US official to coordinate this effort. Through USAID, we are supporting efforts to assess the damage and assist efforts to recover those who were injured and those who must now rebuild. The United States remains a close and enduring friend to the people of Haiti, and we will be there in the aftermath of this tragedy.

Oliver O’Connell14 August 2021 21:22

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Hundreds dead in devastated western Haiti

At least 227 people have been killed after a 7.2-magnitude earthquake struck Haiti, just days before a tropical storm is expected to make landfall on the island.

The country’s Civil Protection Service confirmed the death toll as the US Geographical Survey issued a “red alert” for the disaster, estimating fatalities could stretch into the thousands.

“High casualties and extensive damage are probable and the disaster is likely widespread,” the survey said, adding: “Past red alerts have required a national or international response.”

The country’s prime minister Ariel Henry said he was mobilising all available government resources to help victims in the affected areas.

Oliver O’Connell14 August 2021 21:12

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UN working to support rescue and relief

UN Secretary-General António Guterres is following the tragedy in Haiti and promises support for the rescue and relief effort.

Oliver O’Connell14 August 2021 20:56

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Statement from the Civil Protection Service

The Civil Protection Service tweeted an update on the death toll.

“The death toll from the earthquake has risen to 227, including 158 in the South hundreds of wounded and missing,” it states.

“The first response, carried out by both professional rescuers and members of the public, made it possible to extract many people from the rubble. Hospitals continue to receive injuries.”

Oliver O’Connell14 August 2021 20:51

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Authorities raise death toll to 227, hundreds missing or wounded

Reuters confirms Haiti’s Civil Protection Service says the death toll from this morning’s earthquake rises to 227.

Hundreds more are wounded or missing in the aftermath.

Oliver O’Connell14 August 2021 20:41

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‘I will work to get Haiti the help it needs in this devastating time’

New Jersey Democratic congressman Albio Sires, who chairs the House Foreign Affairs Subcommittee on the Western Hemisphere which has oversight over US policy in Haiti, released a statement.

Oliver O’Connell14 August 2021 20:41

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