China FPU

ITV: Comm Liu Jian Hon

TITLE: China FPU

LANGUAGE: English       

DATE: March 30, 2010      

 

TIMECODE

 

TEXT

00:00:23

WHAT IS YOUR NAME AND YOUR TITLE, OR YOUR RANK?

 

My name is Liu Jian Hon. I am Commander at the CHINA FPU here.

00:00:44

HOW LONG HAVE YOU BEEN IN HAITI?

 

I have been here more than nine months now. We were here June last year.

00:01:01

AND WERE YOU IN HAITI ON JANURY 12th OF 2010?

 

On that day I was outside the building of MINUSTAH, Christopher, with our other delegates there, other members, CHINA FPU members. On that day, some of our CHINA FPU members came to MINUSTAH, they had a meeting with the SRSG. And I was waiting outside for them.

00:01:46

SO YOU WHERE PART OF THE DELEGATION OF THE CHINESE WHO WERE VISITING MINUSTAH?

 

Yes, and we were waiting outside for them. They went into the building to meet the SRSG and the Deputy Police Commissioner.

 

When the earthquake took place, I was in the bus, waiting outside the building, and I saw the Christopher building collapse, totally collapse, very quickly. But we couldn’t do anything.

00:02:35

DO YOU REMEMBER HOW IT HAPPENED? HOW LONG DID IT TAKE?

 

In about more than, I’m not sure, around maybe 20 seconds. More than 20 seconds I think.

00:02:57

SO YOU WERE SITTING INSIDE OF A BUS IN THE PARKING LOT?

 

Yeah, I was sitting in the bus with the other few members and suddenly the bus would shake very strongly. At first, I didn’t realize it was an earthquake. I thought maybe some of our men were doing something on the bus. So when I turned my head to look at them, but the bus was shaking up and down very heavy. So from the side I saw the wall of theChristopherHotelcollapse. Totally collapse. It’s a tragedy.

00:03:49

DO YOU REMEMBER WHAT WENT INTO YOUR MIND AT THAT MOMENT? WHAT WERE YOU THINKING?

 

So when I saw the building collapse, I came to realize that is was an earthquake. So, I shouted to the other colleagues to remain in the safe places. And we also had other people in another place, in a parking area, near the Filipino camp. We communicate with them, and I found out they were safe. And I tried to connect with the people of the delegation inside the building, no answer, it’s a tragedy.

00:04:47

YOU SAW THE BUILDING COME DOWN, YOU KNEW THAT YOU HAD VERY IMPORTANT MEMBERS OF THE DELEGATION OF CHINA INSIDE. WHAT DID YOU THINK AT THAT TIME?

 

At first I tried to connect with, tried to get in tough with them. But it’s a tragedy I think. Because as you know, a building with 7 floors collapsed.

00:05:28

SO WHAT DID YOU DO AT THAT MOMENT?

 

I called them with radio and also I organized my man. Tried to rescue some people in the building. I organized my man in two groups; one to rescue people in the building, the other to provide some security parameter around the MINUSTAH building outside.

00:06:07

CAN YOU TELL ME A LITTLE BIT MORE ABOUT THE DELEGATION? WHO WERE THEY AND WHY WERE THEY VISITING MINUSTAH ON THAT DAY?

 

They came here to talk about our business,Chinafuel (?) business, with them.

00:06:30

THOSE PEOPLE IN THE DELEGATION, WHO WERE THEY? WERE THEY PEOPLE FROM HAITI OR DID THEY CAME ALL THE WAY FROM CHINA TO VISIT?

 

The delegation, including our CHINA FPU Chief Commander, Liaison Officer, and a Media Officer and also a MINUSTAH (…) Contingent Commander. The other three members from countries in the delegation, Senior Officer from the country.

00:07:05

SO WHEN THIS HAPPENED, I IMAGINE THAT YOU HAD TO CONTACTCHINA, OR YOU HAD TO GET THE INFORMATION. WHERE YOU IN COMMUNICATION WITH YOUR HOME COUNTRY?

 

At that time the communication broke down. I couldn’t get in touch with the other people. Only with the radio, to get in touch with the base.

00:07:34

WHAT DID YOU SAY?

 

First I make sure that all the people in the camp are safe and I tell them to move to go to safe and secure places, to stay and remain calm. After the earthquake to move all the valuable, important things from the camp to outside. And all the other people to move outside from the warehouses, because in the buildings it’s dangerous. And we built up our tents and you see all hour people living in tents now.

 

And also get in touch we the other three groups outside on duty. To make sure they are safe. Fortunately, all of them were safe. One of the groups was on duty in Petionville, in that area. The roads were blocked down by the sliced (…) and they stayed there until the other day.

 

After the next day, they communicated with the other military to remove the stones to move it out of their way and come back to the camp. And the other groups, the second group inFortNational, were there is the Brazilian camp. At that timeFortNationalalso totally collapsed. Some Brazilian military soldiers were buried in there. Our man also tried to help them, to rescue them.

00:10:02

WHAT WAS THE CHANGE IN WHAT YOU WERE DOING IN THE DAYS AFTER THE EARTHQUAKE? IT WAS A VERY CHAOTIC TIME, HOW DID YOU DIRECT YOUR PEOPLE?

 

Through the radio. When the situation improved and after maybe, at that day in (…). Only several hours after the earthquake I contacted with our camp and the other two groups, moved from the camp to MINUSTAH HQ to help rescue the people. They drove the car to the House of Premiere of Haiti. They couldn’t move further. They got out of the car and continued their way on foot, to MINUSTAH.

00:10:58

HOW LONG DID THAT TAKE?

 

From Premiere’s House to MINUSTAH it took them almost an hour, almost 40-50 minutes. Because at that time the road was totally blocked by all the things. And they came with some tools; a shovel, and the other things, tools to help to dig, to help get people outside. So it took a long time. But usually, it is very easy to go that road. Very easy to get to MINUSTAH but at that time it was very hard, rough.

00:12:48

DID YOU FEEL THAT WHEN YOU’RE SOMEONE THAT HAS A VERY PROFESSIONAL BACKGROUND, ALMOST LIKE A MILITARY, DID YOU FEEL THAT YOU AND YOUR UNIT WERE PREPARED TO RESPOND TO A DISASTER OF THIS MAGNITUDE?

 

Yes sure. That‘s what I told you. We got three groups all on duty at that time and the other people inside the camp, all of them were safe, even when the earthquake took place. They found more open spacious places to build up the tents and to get all the communication and the other valuable things outside. And they built another commanding office in the tent very quickly. And the other groups also remained safely.

00:13:58

HAVE YOU EVER FACED A DISASTER SO BIG?

 

A natural disaster? No. This was the first time, it was very horrible. Even me, when I first saw an earthquake took place, I didn’t realize at first, but only when I saw the building collapse and I saw the shaking of the bus, I could tell that it was an earthquake. It’s a tragedy.

 

And when I was a kid, I also had such an experience, an earthquake, but it was very long ago, maybe 45 years ago. In my hometown, it was also some places cut off and got an earthquake. But not like this really.

00:15:05

FROM THE EARTHQUAKE UNTIL NOW, WHAT ARE THE PRINCIPLE RESPONSIBILITIES OF THE CHINESE FPU? WHAT ARE YOUR INSTRUCTIONS YOUR COMMANDS?

 

We do our commands as before. A duty, assigned by MINUSTAH, and also security of our camp also make tidy and clean camp for us, even after the earthquake. As before.

00:15:43

AND WERE YOU WORRIED OR CONCERNED ABOUT THE SECURITY SITUATION IN HAITI? THE COUNTRY IS VERY DIFFERENT NOW.

 

Yes. Maybe, at first we thought the situation here might get worse. The people didn’t have food, didn’t have tents, but now with so many donations from the other countries, some of the people can get food and tents from them. But not all of them. Maybe it will take a long time to rebuild the reconstruction of the Haitian country. And for CHINA FPU, all we have to do is to follow the order and tasks from MINUSTAH to maintain order of the society of peace.

00:16:41

FROM YOUR POINT OF VIEW, WHAT ARE THE BIGGEST CHALLENGES FOR YOU TO SUCEED IN YOUR TASKS FOR SECURITY AND MINUSTAH?

 

To try our best to help Haitian people.

00:17:20

NOW I KNOW ENGLISH IS NOT YOUR FIRST LANGUAGE AND I AM WONDERING, AND I DON’T SPEAK CHINESE OR MANDARIN, BUT I AM WONDERING, IS THERE SOMETHING THAT YOU WOULD LIKE TO SAY IN MANDARIN? BECAUSE THIS WILL BE TAPPED AS A RECORD FOR HISTORY, SO IT’S VERY POSSIBLE THAT WITH THE UNITED NATIONS THAT PEOPLE WILL HAVE ACCESS TO YOUR INTERVIEW. IS THERE SOMETHING THAT YOU WOULD LIKE TO SAY?

 

Sure. (Chinese tekst).

 

00:18:37

WHAT DID YOU SAY?

 

Good wishes to Haitian people have a happy life and also hope all the people in the world can live in harmony. Thank you.