Director-General Irina Bokova expresses concern and pledges UNESCO's support for Haiti earthquake victims

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Paris, 13 January

UNESCO Director-General Irina Bokova today expressed her shock and concern over the devastation caused by the earthquake that struck Haiti, and pledged UNESCO's support for the victims of the disaster.

"Reports of the devastation caused by the earthquake are deeply distressing," Ms Bokova said. "I wish to express my heartfelt concern and sympathy for the people of Haiti, and pledge that our Organization will do everything possible within its areas of expertise to help the population through this terrible ordeal.

"I am also anxiously awaiting news of the UNESCO team based in Port-au-Prince."

UNESCO, which has an office in the capital, Port-au-Prince, is closely monitoring the situation in Haiti and working with the United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs to ensure the most effective and rapid response.

At the time of writing, the 14 staff members working in the UNESCO office had not been accounted for.