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TESS VIGELAND: More than 2,000 U.S. Marines were set to arrive in Haiti today to help distribute aid and provide security after last week’s massive earthquake. Latest estimates put the death toll at more than 100,000 people.
Former President Bill Clinton visited the island today. He and former President George W. Bush are leading fundraising efforts here in the U.S. More than 30 countries now have rescue operations underway in Haiti. And today, the European Union pledged some $600 million in aid.
From London, Marketplace’s Stephen Beard reports.
STEPHEN BEARD: The E.U. today promised Haiti more than $180 million in emergency aid. That’s new money for water, food, blankets, medicine and other vital supplies. And the E.U. has gone further — reallocating longer-term aid to Haiti. Four-hundred-fifty-million dollars, some of it previously earmarked to help other Caribbean countries, will now be funneled into rebuilding and developing Haiti.
Lutz Gullner is the E.U. spokesman on foreign affairs. He says in this crisis, at least, money is no longer a problem.
LUTZ GULLNER: There is a lot of money that has been pledged. But the problem is now a different one. It’s the logistics. It’s how can we get the water, the food, the hospitals, . . . How can we deliver them, actually, on the ground.
The aid agencies agree that delivering supplies is the first priority. But they warn that promises of longer-term aid often evaporate as the humanitarian crisis subsides.
In London, this is Stephen Beard for Marketplace.
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