Haiti

Estonia Allocates Additional Aid for Victims of Haiti Earthquake

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Nr 14-E

The Foreign Ministry is donating an additional 1.5 million kroons through the International Red Cross to help the victims of the earthquake in Haiti. Currently Estonia's aid to Haiti totals 3.5 million kroons (223 690 EUR), of which 2.5 million is financial aid through the Red Cross and 1 million is to send experts to the crisis region to help. The money to alleviate the aftermath of the earthquake in Haiti is being allocated from the Foreign Ministry's funds for development and humanitarian aid.

Foreing Minister Urmas Paet stated that the situation in Haiti is becoming increasingly more complicated, and therefore it is important that help reaches those who need it as soon as possible. "Estonia is sending an IT expert and a three-member logistics team with supplies to Haiti to help support the activities of international organisations on site," stated Foreign Minister Paet. The Estonian experts will travel to the crisis region along with experts from the Nordic countries within the framework of International Humanitarian Partnership.

On Thursday, 14 January the Foreign Ministry decided to allocate one million kroons to alleviate the situation in Haiti. Foreign Minister Urmas Paet stated that Haiti's need for aid is great, which is why the Foreign Ministry decided to contribute an addition 1.5 million kroons in aid through the Red Cross.

Gert Teder, a member of the Estonian Rescue Service, was among the European Union evaluation team that travelled to Haiti on Wednesday, 13 January. The purpose of the team, sent within the framework of the civil protection mechanism, is to evaluate the needs of those who have been injured and co-ordinate the arriving aid. The European Union evaluation team sent to Haiti includes representatives from six nations.

The entire international community has rushed to the aid of Haiti, which is suffering in the aftermath of a powerful earthquake. International organisations have launched extensive aid operations in Haiti. The victims of the earthquake are lacking in medical supplies, food and drinking water, and thousands are without shelter. Access to the disaster zone is also difficult. Haiti needs medical equipment, search and rescue technology, and means of communication.

High Representative for Foreign Affairs of the European Union Catherine Ashton has called upon all the European Union development ministers to meet in Brussels on Monday, 18 January, to discuss matters related to the humanitarian disaster in Haiti and opportunities to alleviate the situation.

It is also possible to make voluntary donations to help alleviate the situation in Haiti. The following organisations have announced the launch of aid operations: the International Red Cross, the World Food Programme (WFP), UNICEF, the World Health Organisation (WHO), the International Organisation for Migration (IOM), and many other international organisation and non-profits. UNICEF is focusing first and foremost on helping children in Haiti, the IOM is working to offer temporary shelter to thousands of Port-au-Prince residents who have lost their homes, and the Red Cross and WHO and attempting to provide first aid to the injured. They are all in need of funds for procuring medicine, drinking water, tents, or other necessary supplies. In Estonia, donations are being collected by the Estonian Red Cross and the Estonian National Committee for UNICEF.

Donations can be made to:

Estonian Red Cross: SWEDBANK 1180001436 and SEB 10220039608010, subject "Haiti maavärin"

Estonian National Committee for UNICEF: SEB 10052039502009, subject "Haiti"

IOM: http://www.iom.int/jahia/jsp/index.jsp

IFRC: http://donate.ifrc.org/

UNICEF: http://www.supportunicef.org/site/pp.asp?c=9fLEJSOALpE&b=1023561

WFP: https://donate.wfp.org/supporter/donatenow.do?n=gbss&dfdbid=1044253

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