UN to observe moment of silence for Haiti’s dead

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

NEW YORK - The UN will observe a moment of silence Wednesday to mark the exact time the mammoth earthquake struck Haiti a year ago and killed an estimated 230,000 people, including 102 UN personnel in Port-au-Prince.

The UN deaths in Haiti Jan 12, 2010 were the largest ever in a single day in UN peacekeeping operations around the world.

Fifty-three civilians and 43 police and military of the UN Stabilisation Mission in Haiti were killed, many of them inside the UN headquarters in the Haitian capital, the UN Staff Union in New York recalled.

UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon and personnel will gather at the small chapel at headquarters for a moment of silence in remembrance of all those killed.

“One year later, the pain from that loss has not diminished, and the Staff Union mourns together with the families and friends of the deceased even as we commiserate with the survivors whose lives have forever changed,” said UN Staff Union President Stephen Kisambira.

The UN peacekeeping missions last year also lost at least 10 military and three civilian contractors to violence while performing their duties in the Democratic Republic of Congo and Sudan.

In 2009, 31 UN civilian personnel lost their lives to terrorist attacks, crime and armed conflict, the UN said.

Filed under: Accidents and Disasters

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