WASHINGTON, DC—Representative Eliot L. Engel, the leading Democrat on the House Committee on Foreign Affairs, today made the following statement on the fifth anniversary of the devastating January 12, 2010 earthquake in Haiti:
“Five years ago today, Haiti was struck by a devastating earthquake that killed more than 230,000 people and affected many more. Shortly thereafter, I visited Haiti to make sure that the Haitian people knew that Congress would stand with them as they rebuilt their country. Congress has provided support for Haiti totaling $4 billion since the earthquake, and the country has made impressive strides in recovering. Yet it still remains the poorest country in the hemisphere, and we cannot abandon the Haitian people just as things have begun to turn the corner. Haiti needs us now more than ever. As reconstruction on the island continues, I am confident that the Haitian-American community will continue to play an extremely important role.
“At the same time, continued successful reconstruction in Haiti will depend on political stability and the scheduling of long-delayed elections. The country simply cannot afford another prolonged political crisis. I call on all parties to come together at this time to chart a course for the country’s long delayed elections and to ensure that these elections are free and fair.”