Hurricane Dean: UN stands ready to help affected countries in the Caribbean

Hurricane Dean: UN stands ready to help affected countries in the Caribbean

Hurricane Dean, Haiti
The United Nations has deployed a team of disaster assessment and coordination experts to the Caribbean to assist countries hit by Hurricane Dean which has left a trail of death and destruction in its rampage past St. Lucia, the Dominican Republic, Dominica, Martinique, Haiti, Jamaica and the Cayman Islands and on towards the coast of Mexico.

“The United Nations stands ready to support relief efforts with other measures, including the release of emergency funds,” spokesperson Michele Montas told a news briefing, adding that the world organization was is in close contact with the Governments of affected countries.

In a statement, she said Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon was deeply saddened to learn of the human and economic losses brought on by Hurricane Dean in the Caribbean, and extended condolences to those who lost family and friends.

Military and police units of the UN Stabilization Mission in Haiti (MINUSTAH) joined local police in helping to evacuate some 2,000 people living near the shore. In addition, the mission helped warn the local people of the eventual health and other risks and necessary preventive measures in the wake of the powerful storm.

Also in Haiti, the UN Children’s Fund (UNICEF) on Saturday sent drugs to support 2000 people for three months to Jacmel Hospital. The UN World Health Organization (WHO) and the Ministry of Health and Population will be in charge of distributing the drugs based on emerging needs, according to a situation update produced by the UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA).