Haiti needs an immediate boost in relief funding to help hundreds of hungry people still living in shelters nearly two months after a string of devastating hurricanes, the U.N. humanitarian chief said Friday.
John Holmes, the U.N. undersecretary-general for humanitarian affairs, made the appeal after he arrived in the coastal city of Gonaives by helicopter and visited a warehouse where 1,500 people are still living seven weeks after their homes were destroyed.
"We need to do more," he said. "It's obvious that the conditions are still not good in a lot of those shelters."
Donor countries have contributed just 23 percent of a $108-million U.N. appeal issued after the storms, with an additional $16-million pledged but not delivered, the U.N. Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs said Friday.
Holmes said the U.N. will contribute another $5-million for a total of $9-million.
Guantanamo trial is put off till Jan. 26
A military judge at Guantanamo Bay on Friday postponed the trial of a Canadian charged with killing a U.S. soldier, throwing the entire proceeding into doubt because the new start date comes after the next U.S. president takes office. Barack Obama and John McCain have both vowed to close the prison at Guantanamo Bay if elected president.
Omar Khadr, of Toronto, was 15 when he allegedly killed Delta Force soldier Chris Speer of Albuquerque, N.M., with a grenade during a firefight in Afghanistan 2002.
The judge, Army Col. Patrick Parrish, set a Jan. 26 trial date to allow time for a psychologist for the defense to obtain a security clearance and assess Khadr. Marine Maj. Jeffrey Groharing, leader of the prosecution team, had urged the judge to deny the request by Khadr's lawyers for a delay, accusing them of undertaking "extensive efforts to avoid going to trial."
Four arrested in bomb attack on market
Police have arrested four Hindus linked to extremist groups on suspicion of planting a bomb that killed five people in a market crowded with Muslim shoppers last month, an official said Friday. The arrests signaled a change of course for police, who have blamed Muslim extremists for a wave of bombings that have killed more than 145 people across the country since May.