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Caricom Urges Haiti to Rebuild with Social Equity

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The Caribbean Community (CARICOM) on Saturday appealed to the Haitian government to attach importance to social ethics in its rebuilding efforts after the devastating earthquake.

The appeal was made by the chief of a Caricom delegation visiting the quake-stricken Caribbean island nation.

"Haiti must attend to concepts of social equity in its rebuilding efforts," Caricom Secretary-General Edwin Carrington said at a joint press conference with Haitian President Rene Preval.

Carrington said his institution would do all it could to support Haiti's rebuilding efforts.

After the press conference, Carrington's team met the coordinator of the community's relief effort in Haiti, Earl Adams.

Caricom began to provide assistance to Haiti immediately after the 7.3-magnitude temblor hit Haiti on January 12.

The delegation also took an aerial tour of the epi-center at Leogane, a town 30 km from Port-au-Prince, the country's capital city. In Leogane, around 90 percent of the buildings were either destroyed or damaged.

The main purpose of Caricom, which groups 15 Caribbean nations and dependencies, is to promote economic integration and cooperation among members.

Also on Saturday, the International Organization for Migration (IOM) said it had rehoused the deputies, senators and assistant staff of Haiti's legislature.

The Haitian parliamentarians, who had been sleeping in the homes of their relatives for nearly a month, received 130 tents, 350 tarpaulins and 350 hygiene kits. IOM had also reached 1,500 families with similar aid.

(Xinhua News Agency February 7, 2010)

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