Monday, February 22, 2010

UN Security Council: Better Shelter, Security Needed for Haiti Victims

Urgent Action Still Needed on Safe Camp Sites for Those Made Homeless by Quake

Human Rights Watch, February 19, 2010
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A woman sits in front of her tent in a makeshift camp in Port-au-Prince, Haiti.

© 2010 Reuters

Despite all the relief efforts, hundreds of thousands of Haitians remain in desperate need. The Haitian government urgently needs to do all it can lawfully to make sites available for camps for displaced and homeless persons.

Anna Neistat, senior emergencies researcher

(New York) – The United Nations Security Council should make improving the quality and security of camps for displaced victims of Haiti’s devastating earthquake a top priority, Human Rights Watch said today in an open letter to the Council’s member states. The Security Council is being briefed today on the humanitarian situation in Haiti by the UN emergency relief coordinator, John Holmes, and the head of the Peacekeeping Department, Alain Le Roy.

Human Rights Watch completed a field investigation in Haiti on February 12, 2010, and drew the attention of Security Council members to areas it believes deserve urgent action. The team visited 15 of the largest camps for displaced persons in Port-au-Prince and Jacmel (housing 5,000 to 35,000 people each), and interviewed over 150 camp residents, local officials, and staff of international relief agencies and UN bodies, as well as local activists and representatives of non-governmental organizations.

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