Major Quake, Aftershocks Rattle Haiti
Huge death toll likely from 7.0 temblor; Obama promises aid
By John Johnson,  Newser Staff
Posted Jan 12, 2010 4:50 PM CST
Updated Jan 12, 2010 6:14 PM CST
Map locates a strong earthquake that struck Haiti Tuesday
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(Newser) – Scores of buildings have collapsed in Haiti after a 7.0-magnitude earthquake struck near the capital, Port-au-Prince, today, and was followed by a number of strong aftershocks, with two measuring 5.5 or higher. There’s no yet word on what’s expected to be a high death toll. An AP videographer saw the wrecked hospital in nearby Petionville, and a US government official reported seeing houses that had tumbled into a ravine.

In a statement this evening, President Obama said that his thoughts were with the people of Haiti, and that the US stands ready to help in whatever ways prove necessary. “There are emergency meetings going on right now," a State Department spokesman said. “We need to gather what information we can quickly. We will of course assist in any way we can.”