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31 March 2010 - International Donors’ Conference for Haiti - Press conference by the co-chairs : Statement by Mr. Bernard Kouchner, Minister of Foreign and European Affairs

There are times we can be proud of being part of the international community. But we also wonder why it’s always in the face of a disaster that we respond so well. Alfred de Musset said: "Naught makes us nobler than a noble grief (…) Best are the songs most desperate in their woe. Immortal ones, which are pure sobs I know." (1)

Why do we always come together after a disaster, I wonder. I believe we all felt, on 12 January, that we were all Haitians, all of us. Today, we continue to be Haitians; what has changed is the development paradigm. Bravo for changing this as well, but let’s not be satisfied with that alone. We have all been humanitarian workers in Haiti. What has just changed is that the Haitians have decided to assume responsibility for their own future.

Thank you President Préval,

Thank you Secretary-General,

Thank you everyone.

This was a collective endeavour and we have enjoyed working together.

Thank you Prime Minister./.

(1) Translation by Emma Lazarus

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Organisation des Nations Unies Présidence de la République France Diplomatie La France à l'Office des Nations Unies à Genève Union Européenne Première réunion de l'ONU