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Haitian President: Quake Toll Could Reach 300,000

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Haitian President Rene Preval said on Sunday that as many as 300,000 people died in the devastating earthquake that rocked the country on Jan. 12.

In his opening speech to the first Mexico-Caricom Summit held in Playa del Carmen, a Caribbean coast resort in Mexico, Preval said: "More than 200,000 bodies have been recovered from the streets, (and) with those under the rubble that figure could reach 300,000."

Preval, who after the Sunday summit will also take part in a Group of Rio Summit here on Monday and Tuesday, thanked the host Mexico for all the aid it had provided for Haiti's earthquake victims.

(Xinhua News Agency February 22, 2010)

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