» Tuesday, January 19, 2010


The Prime Minister continues to follow the situation in Haiti very closely. On coordination of the international response the PM said we’ll be looking for in the next day is the co-ordination that is essential, and the mobilisation of the effort from all the different parts of the world. If there is a need for policemen and women to be provided from Europe then that need should be met. If there is a need for special medical facilities to be provided from Britain or from any other country we are ready to provide it.

Aid is getting through. It’s slow, it’s immensely frustrating, but it’s beginning to get to the people. Hugely complex situation, smashed infrastructure, terrible toll among the UN people who would normally coordinate response. I would draw your attention to what DEC chief executive Brendan Gormley said yesterday: “We know that people are being reached, but there is a huge challenge ahead, and much more work to be done.”

The efforts of FCO consular staff to contact British Nationals in Haiti are continuing. We have now located and checked on over 60 Brits, who have confirmed they are safe and well.

Asked if the Prime Minister was willing to send police officers to Haiti to help with the law and order situation, the PMS said that the Prime Minister had made it clear that we stood ready to help in any way we could.

Asked if the UK would be sending any troops to Haiti, the PMS said that it was her understanding that the UN Secretary General had just confirmed that troops would be sent as well as police officers to help with the situation in Haiti. Put that this was a UN initiative, the PMS confirmed that it was and said we stood ready to help if requested.

Asked if the UK would take any of the Haitian nationals seeking asylum, the PMS replied that we were making arrangements for any British people in Haiti to return to the UK if they chose to. In terms of Haitian nationals, the PMS said that our immediate response would be to help people with medical supplies, food and water. Issues regarding asylum were a separate matter and would be dealt with in the normal way and she advised people to speak to the Home Office.

original source.

Briefing took place at 15:45 | Search for related news

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