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Cablegate: French Relief Assistance to Haiti - Snapshot:

VZCZCXRO4337
OO RUEHIK
DE RUEHFR #0159/01 0411218
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
O 101218Z FEB 10 ZDS ZDK
FM AMEMBASSY PARIS
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC IMMEDIATE 8286
INFO RUCNMEM/EU MEMBER STATES COLLECTIVE PRIORITY

UNCLAS SECTION 01 OF 02 PARIS 000159

C O R R E C T E D C O P Y (TAGS ADDED)

SIPDIS

DEPT PLEASE PASS OP CENTER TASK FORCE 1

E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: PREF EAID PHUM CVIS UN FR HA
SUBJECT: FRENCH RELIEF ASSISTANCE TO HAITI - SNAPSHOT:
FEBRUARY 9, 2010

REF: A. A. STATE 4807
B. B. STATE 4854
C. C. STATE 4909
D. D. PARIS 65

PARIS 00000159 001.16 OF 002


1. (SBU) SUMMARY: As the international community transitions
from the immediate crisis to the stabilization period before
the long-term effort of reconstruction, France remains
committed to sending physical and financial reinforcements to
aid Haitian disaster victims. Following the conclusion of
their emergency search and rescue missions, the GOF is now
shifting its relief effort to assisting survivors of the
earthquake, with a particular focus on orphaned children in
Haiti. France remains a strong supporter of prepatory
meetings on Haiti leading up to an international donors,
conference that would address Haitian reconstruction. END
SUMMARY.

FRENCH CONTRIBUTION TO THE RELIEF EFFORT, TO DATE
--------------------------------------------- ----
2. (SBU) The French have sent 25 million euros ($36 million)
to Haiti in emergency aid, with 10 million euros ($15
million) channeled through the UN and 2 million euros ($3
million) in emergency food aid. French NGOs have collected
over 40 million euros ($57 million) in donations. France has
also agreed to cancel 54 million euros ($76 million) in
remaining French-owned Haitian debt as agreed in the Paris
Club. Since the earthquake, France has sent over 1,200
French citizens to Haiti to support the relief effort. As of
February 8, France has 1,028 personnel engaged in Haiti, with
364 civil security members, 540 military, and 114 gendarmes.
Nearly 1,700 metric tons of humanitarian material and
equipment have been delivered since the French relief effort
began on January 13. Five military aircraft conduct daily
rotations between Haiti and the French Antilles on evacuation
missions. As of February 9, France evacuated a total of
2,770 people, repatriating 1,642 individuals back to
metropolitan France and 1,127 survivors to the West Indies.
Of the 2770 evacuees, 1,221 were French citizens, 1,216
Haitian nationals, 47 citizens of the European Union, 57
third-country nationals, and 278 Haitian children currently
involved in adoption proceedings by French families. French
teams have confirmed the deaths of 25 French nationals, with
an additional 9 French citizens still missing from the French
community of over 1,400 in Haiti. French search and rescue
teams, which officially completed their missions on January
22, have rescued a total of 16 survivors buried beneath the
rubble. A team of 24 search and rescue personnel remain on
the ground to continue clearing rubble for any remaining
bodies. On February 8, Prime Minister Francois Fillon hosted
a reception for hundreds of returning French civilian and
military personnel to thank them for their humanitarian
service in Haiti.

3. (SBU) In Haiti, the French field hospitals and advanced
medical posts comprised of over 160 medical personnel have
conducted 9,500 consultations, hospitalized over 1,300
people, and performed 364 surgeries to date. The French have
installed four potable water stations with a capacity of
producing enough drinking water for 40,000 people per day.
The "Siroco" naval ship arrived on January 19 with a field
hospital on board, allowing for the immediate care of wounded
victims. The French naval ship "Francis Garnier" arrived on
January 24, carrying 1,300 metric tons of material and four
helicopters. In early February, the French military helped
provide temporary relief to disaster victims by setting up
600 tents in downtown Port-au-Prince on the Champs de Mars,
with a capacity to accommodate over 5,000 people. An
additional 1,000 metric tons of humanitarian cargo is
scheduled to be shipped from Martinique and Guadeloupe on
February 18. In Paris, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MFA)
Crisis Center continues to lead the French emergency response
in Haiti and has mobilized a total of 225 agents to staff the
crisis 24 hours a day. The two dedicated crisis hotlines
have received nearly 20,000 calls as of February 8.

THE INITIAL FRENCH RECONSTRUCTION EFFORT
----------------------------------------
4. (SBU) The French reconstruction effort is led by
Ambassador Pierre Dusquene, who is responsible for
coordinating and implementing French aid in preparation for
the international conference on the reconstruction of Haiti.
The MFA has deployed 16 officers to support the coordination
and reconstruction cell in the French Embassy in
Port-au-Prince, in the hopes that the French mission will be
fully operational for the start of the rebuilding phase.
Although meetings in preparation of an international donors'
conference have not yet been set, the GOF is fully mobilized
to support the reconstruction effort and has committed to
attending at all levels. On January 25, FM Bernard Kouchner

PARIS 00000159 002.16 OF 002


participated in the prepatory conference on the
reconstruction of Haiti in Montreal, where France committed
to sending 100 gendarmes as a contingent of a larger EU
mission.


GOF EVACUATES AND UNITES HAITIAN ORPHANS WITH FRENCH FAMILIES
--------------------------------------------- ----------------
5. (SBU) As of February 8, 277 Haitian orphans have been
united with their adoptive French families in metropolitan
France and others are expected to arrive in coming days.
(Note: Each of the repatriations received official approval
by the Haitian authorities.) On the ground, the French
Embassy is conducting routine visits to nurseries in
three-man teams consisting of an MFA consular officer, a
doctor, and a volunteer firefighter to help identify and
protect at-risk children in the adoption proceedings as well
as to assess the exact needs of the various institutions on
the ground. The French adoption teams in Haiti also work
closely with the United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF) and
the World Food Program (WFP) to identify potential Haitian
orphans. In conjunction with the French Embassy in
Port-au-Prince and the MFA Crisis Center, the French Adoption
Service (IAS) in Paris has worked to gather information from
families and organizations authorized to adopt. In addition
to the seven agents sent to Haiti to manage the international
adoption process, the Crisis Center has established a team to
manage the adoption records and to maintain contact with
adoptive families in France. A special Crisis Center
adoption hotline has been created and dedicated to fielding
public inquiries. To date, over 909 families are in contact
with the Crisis Center in regards to the adoption of 999
children.

6. (SBU) Under the authority of PM Fillon, the MFA is
working to establish a Joint Commission with Haitian
authorities to expedite the procedures for children whose
cases had reached the final stages of the adoption process.
Speaking in front of Parliament on February 5, FM Kouchner
said that France has a responsibility to "meet the
expectations of French families while ensuring the interests
of children under the Hague Convention." In collaboration
with other relevant adoption agencies, the MFA has also
established a Franco-Haitian ad-hoc committee to facilitate
the processing of documentation used in the adoption
procedure. The commission will make recommendations for
cases where no decision has yet been made prior to the
earthquake. Ambassador in charge of international adoptions,
Jean-Paul Monchau, is in Port-au-Prince to present the
proposal of a bilateral monitoring commission to examine the
adoption procedures to the Haitian authorities. In
compliance with international commitments and Haitian
procedures, the proposal is meant to serve the best interest
of the children. According to MFA desk officer for Haiti
Frederic Paruta on February 8, the NGOs, members of adoption
organizations, and the GOF are ready to participate in this
committee but are awaiting the official response of Haitian
authorities.
RIVKIN

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