January 20th, 2010
04:18 PM ET

Clinton "not satisfied" with pace of aid delivery but "realistic" given challenges

[cnn-photo-caption image=http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2010/WORLD/americas/01/20/haiti.updates.wednesday/smlvid.wash.afp.gi.jpg width=300 height=169]

Jill Dougherty
CNN Foreign Affairs Correspondent

Asked by CNN whether she is satisfied with the pace of getting relief supplies and personnel on the ground in Haiti Secretary of State Hillary Clinton said Wednesday “of course I’m not satisfied with getting material and personnel in for everyone who needs it” but she defended the overall effort saying “realistically I am aware of the difficulties that this terrible natural disaster has posed.”

Answering reporters’ questions at the State department, Clinton said “there were so many challenges that had to be addressed all at once” after the earthquake and that it is “really remarkable how much we’ve gotten done.”

“But when the principle instruments of authority and assistance dealing with the Haitian government, the United Nations, MINUSTA, themselves were so impacted, we really had to start at the very beginning.”

“Frankly if you look at the whole, broad context of what we’ve been able to do I think that, overall, it’s an heroic, historic effort.”

The Secretary also defended the work of Haitian President Rene Preval who has been largely absent publicly in the aftermath of the quake.

Asked whether the need to coordinate relief efforts with a decimated governmental structure might have slowed relief efforts, Clinton conceded the government of Haiti was “grievously damaged” by the earthquake. This included damage to government buildings and loss of government officials.

“However, President Preval, the Prime Minister and those ministers who have been working with him meet every morning and every afternoon, they are deeply involved in coordinating not only with the United States but with the United Nations an other countries and donors as well.”

Filed under: Haiti Earthquake • Hillary Clinton
soundoff (3 Responses)
  1. sandy374

    I will write and call Secretary Clinton in reference to the extreme indifference of the United States and the UN Director Ban Ki-Moon.
    There has never been a search and rescue mission performed by the US or the UN. They have walked right over living people that are helpless. Nine days later and people still do not have medicine and Doctors are drained from lack of support.
    Please give Gary and Elizabeth by thanks. They are doing a great job.
    I forgot to include them in my aacolades to CNN yesterday.

    January 20, 2010 at 4:55 pm |
  2. Leslie Brown

    I have a question – not so much of a comment –
    What will, or is, being done with what seems to be thousands of new orphans? It appears that prior to this horrific event, there was an orphan issues – how can these children be cared for in an approriate and caring way?

    January 20, 2010 at 4:26 pm |
  3. amy

    I think it is time for civilians to be allowed in to help. Where can we go to volunteer on the ground in Haiti?

    January 20, 2010 at 4:25 pm |