By Christiane Amanpour
In Haiti, the emergency phase is still in full swing. Yes, many official rescue efforts have been called off. But the truth is that international rescue crews are still being called out when there's a clue that somebody might be alive under the rubble.
Because of the miraculous rescue of a 24-year-old man on Saturday night, they are not giving up. Hope does diminish with each day, but the rescues haven’t ceased. So they may even pull more people out. I think that gives tremendous hope not just to people here in Port-au-Prince but to people everywhere.
This Sunday, we saw Mass and religious services here and around the country. This is a powerfully religious country. So many Haitians were not just mourning the family and friends they lost, but giving thanks for the survival of friends who made it through and for the resilience and resolve they have shown throughout this incredible crisis.
And now, at last, the aid pipeline is gradually widening and more food and water is gradually getting to people who need it. It’s still not perfect, but it is slowly becoming a much more organized distribution.
We’ve seen signs of rebuilding that will allow Haitians to return to their homes. And the U.N. is conscious that it needs to help put people to work. That will help build a sense of security here - just paying people, so they can keep body and soul together.
One of the U.N.’s plans is to pay people $3 a day to start collecting rubble and get it out of the streets. That might not sound like much, but it's more than the $1 a day most people exist on here in Haiti. Now they can start to get the streets back to normal.
And at the same time, emergency officials want people to get out of the capital city to go see family around the country, whose communities might have withstood the earthquake better than this ravaged city has. We're seeing people leaving town by whatever means they can find – on busses, bicycles, motorbikes, and in cars.
It’s important to know that not all of Haiti has been destroyed. The greatest damage has occurred in this capital city and parts of Jacmel – a cultural capital on the southern Caribbean coast. Leogane, another city close to Jacmel, was also hit hard, and people there are also moving to the countryside.
Many Haitians would like to leave the country altogether. The United States has made it clear in radio broadcasts here in Haiti, in aerial broadcasts from its huge C-130 transport jets, that they are not allowing illegal immigrants to enter the United States. So without a visa, Haitians are being told, “do not come” – you’ll be repatriated. This sounds harsh, but the United States says it is focusing its help inside Haiti, and doesn’t want people to perish trying to cross the high seas.
Still, we see long lines by the immigration offices, by the passport offices, people camping out by the U.S. embassy, the Canadian embassy – all, hoping to leave. All hoping for a future.