January 14, 2010 / 8:58 PM / 8 years ago

Donors, U.N. must discuss Haiti: Brazil

BRASILIA (Reuters) - Brazil called on Thursday for an international donor conference within weeks to respond to the earthquake disaster in Haiti.

Foreign Minister Celso Amorim also said in an interview with Reuters the United Nations should expand the mandate of the Brazilian-led stabilization force in Haiti to hasten reconstruction work in the impoverished country.

A donor conference should raise at least $1 billion, Amorim said.

His call echoed that of French President Nicolas Sarkozy on Thursday for an international aid conference.

Tens of thousands of people are feared dead following an earthquake that struck the Caribbean country on Tuesday.

The U.N. mandate for its peacekeeping forces in Haiti needs to go beyond its current mission, Amorim said.

“The mandate is focused on security and peace issues. It needs to facilitate work that goes beyond maintaining order,” Amorim said.

Amorim said he was not certain whether that required the U.N. Security Council to meet or whether a resolution by the General Assembly was sufficient.

“There are ways to do this. I‘m not worried about that, I don’t think anybody will impose restrictions at a moment like this,” he said.

The mission was mandated to help support the democratic process and oversaw the 2006 election of Rene Preval that returned Haiti to constitutional rule.

Editing by Peter Cooney

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