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US Reaches Out to Quake-Hit Haiti

The U.S. government as well as American officials and aid workers are trying to help Haiti following the devastating earthquake that hit near the capital Port-au-Prince late Tuesday.

Secretary of State Hillary Clinton outlined U.S. help to Haiti from Hawaii where she is attending an Asia-Pacific conference.

"The United States is offering our full assistance to Haiti and to others in the region," she said. "We will be providing both civilian and military disaster relief and humanitarian assistance. Our prayers are with the people who have suffered, their families and their loved ones."

The United Nations Special Envoy to Haiti is her husband, former U.S. President Bill Clinton. His office released a statement saying they are committed to do whatever they can to assist in relief, recovery and rebuilding.

Location of Haiti earthquake, 12 Jan 2010
Location of Haiti earthquake, 12 Jan 2010

A member of the U.S. group Partners for Haiti, which does religious aid work, Kyn Tolson, says she has been scrambling to get in contact with people inside Haiti.

"Our organization is trying to reach our mission house which is in Port-au-Prince," said Kyn Tolson. "It appears that cell contact and landline contact is either down or so busy that we definitely cannot get through. We are emailing all sorts of people too. We want to see if there are any problems first of all with our people in our mission house."

Haiti, the poorest country in the Western Hemisphere, has been devastated in recent years by destructive and deadly hurricanes. Scientists say an earthquake of this magnitude has not hit the Caribbean region in more than 200 years.