Murkowski Statement on the Haiti Earthquake

WASHINGTON, D.C. - U.S. Sen. Lisa Murkowski, R-Alaska, today made the following comment regarding the devastating earthquake in Haiti:

"I am deeply saddened by the news of the devastating earthquake which struck Haiti yesterday and my sincere condolences are with the Haitian people during this difficult time. My heart goes out to the families of those who have died and to those who are still waiting for information on the status of their loved ones. Those with missing family or friends in Haiti may use a special phone line and email set up by the State Department. That number is 1-888-407-4747. The email address is ca-taskforce@state.gov.

"The United States government has pledged extensive disaster assistance to assist the people of Haiti in recovering. The U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) is dispatching a Disaster Assistance Response Team. They have also activated two of the Federal Emergency Management Agency's Urban Search and Rescue Task Forces, consisting of highly skilled firefighters, medical personnel, search and rescue canines and heavy equipment.

"The Defense Department's U.S Southern Command in Miami, under the able leadership of General Douglas Fraser, an individual well known to Alaskans as the former Commander of Alaskan Command at Elmendorf Air Force Base, is coordinating the military's role in responding to this great tragedy.

"The U.S. Southern Command will deploy a team of 30 people to Haiti to support U.S. relief efforts. The team, which includes U.S. military engineers, operational planners and a command and control group and communication specialists, will arrive in Haiti today on two C-130 Hercules aircraft. The team will work with U.S. Embassy personnel as well as Haitian, United Nations and international officials to assess the situation and facilitate follow on U.S. military support. Other U.S. military assets are being dispatched to the region.

"It is not the nature of Alaskans to simply drive on by when tragedy strikes, whether it's a car in the ditch at the side of the road or a natural disaster anywhere in the world. We get involved to make things better. The best way for Alaskans to help the people of Haiti is to consider supporting the work of the Red Cross and faith-based voluntary relief agencies which have mobilized in response to this truly catastrophic event." 

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