Please donate $5 to the Haitian Relief Fund by texting YELE to 501501. Your help is greatly needed in Haiti and every dollar counts. 80% of the Haitian poulation lives under the proverty line and 54% lives in abject proverty. Now, more than ever, they need our prayers and our aid in their time of need. – Joy “The Book Club Expert”
(CNN) — The powerful earthquake that rocked Haiti “destroyed” much of Port-au-Prince, the country’s first lady reported, as the widespread devastation in the country’s teeming capital came into full view Wednesday as dawn broke.
“We talked with the first lady of Haiti last night, at least our consulate general in Miami did,” Raymond Joseph, Haitian ambassador to the United States, told CNN’s American Morning, referring to Elisabeth Debrosse Delatour.
“And she said that she was all right and the president was all right, and most government officials were all right because this thing happened after hours, and most of the government buildings that have collapsed, collapsed after the employees were out.”
But “the bad news is that she said most of Port-au-Prince is destroyed, and she’s calling for some help in the form of a hospital ship off the coast of Port-au-Prince, just in the same way that the United States had helped us in 2008 after four hurricanes hit Haiti in three weeks.”
Limited communications hampered reporting of casualties and destruction. But the quake had reportedly brought down The Hotel Montana, popular with foreigners visiting Port-au-Prince. French Minister of Cooperation Alain Joyandet expressed concern Wednesday for the approximately 200 French tourists staying there.
Night fell a few hours after the earthquake reduced buildings as grand as the National Palace to rubble and knocked down phone and power lines.
Wounded people, white with dust, filled the streets. Women clutched their babies, desperate to find help. Others stretched their arms skyward, calling out Jesus’ name.
Communication with people in Haiti was, at best, sketchy and achieved mainly through social networking sites such as Twitter and YouTube and via Internet phone.