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First-hand account from our special correspondent

2 min

France 24's special correspondents reporting from Port-au-Prince, Haiti, give eyewitness accounts of the devastation.


January 16: The waiting game

Ioan Grillo, France 24's special correspondent in Haiti, reported the following at 5pm Paris time (GMT+1):

"The aid is coming through, but very slowly. Considering the overwhelming size of the tragedy it’s very little. On the street you find thousands of injured people with tragic stories. People with shattered legs, crushed heads. Many of them are dying because medical care is not there.

"One of the problems is that there is chaos in the airport. With the US military in control there is more order here, but the city is still in a very chaotic situation.


"It is a very lawless situation in the city. There is no real symbol of any authority; the Haitian government is completely absent. The presidential palace is in rubble. The UN has not really stepped in, even the US military has not come into the city. There is no TV on the air. 

"People are fleeing the city to find water and food, and there are still tremors shaking the already fragile buildings. People are seeking refuge in the countryside.

"Tragically, most of those under rubble will have died. There are some miracle cases, and people are still searching for those people.

"On the streets, they’re not seeing the UN, the US, the trucks of aid. If ([US Secretary of State] Hillary Clinton comes to the airport and takes a photograph, that’s not going to give much hope to people. If she comes into the city, that might give them some hope."


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