The death toll from the earthquake in Haiti rises to 724 dead

The provisional balance of the 7.2 magnitude earthquake that struck Haiti on Saturday worsened on Sunday, reaching 724 deaths and more than 2,800 registered injuries, according to the country’s civil protection services.

“The number of human victims of the earthquake increased at the beginning of the day on August 15 to 724 dead: 500 in the south, 100 in Grand’Anse, 122 in Nippes and 2 in the northwest,” said a statement.

On Sunday, rescue teams were looking for survivors, after the earthquake that occurred on Saturday at 08:29 (12:29 GMT) 12 km from the city of Saint-Louis-du-Sud, located about 160 km from the capital. of Haiti, Port. -au-Prince, according to data from the American Institute of Geophysics (USGS). Many buildings collapsed during the powerful earthquake that trapped hundreds of residents under concrete slabs.

Residents mobilized to help the victims injured in the collapse of buildings. “The first interventions, carried out by both professional rescuers and members of the population, allowed many people to be pulled out of the rubble,” underlined the civil protection services.

More than 1,800 people were injured in the earthquake and the few hospitals in the affected regions are already struggling to provide emergency care.

The head of Government, Ariel Henry, who flew over the worst affected areas by helicopter on Saturday, announced that a state of emergency had been declared for a month in the four departments affected by the disaster. The Health Ministry has sent personnel and medicines to the southwest of the peninsula, but emergency logistics are threatened by the insecurity that has plagued Haiti for months.

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In just over two kilometers, the only road that connects the capital with the southern half of the country runs through the poor neighborhood of Martissant under the control of armed gangs since the beginning of June, preventing free movement. “All aid must be able to get through,” Prime Minister Ariel Henry said Saturday night.

On the south coast, a multi-story hotel, called Le Manguier, collapsed in Les Cayes, Haiti’s third-largest city. The lifeless body of former Haitian senator Gabriel Fortuné, owner of the hotel, was removed from the rubble. His death has been confirmed by the Prime Minister.

The long impact was felt throughout the country. With more than 200,000 inhabitants, the agglomeration of Jérémie, in the extreme southwest of the peninsula, suffered significant damage in the center of the city. “The roof of the cathedral fell,” explained Jeremías’ neighbor. “The main street is blocked.”

“I was at home when it started shaking, I was near a window and I saw everything fall,” said Christella Saint Hilaire, 21, who lives in the town of L’Asile, near the epicenter of the earthquake. “A piece of wall fell on my back, but I’m not too hurt.”

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