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The prime minister of Haiti visited the multipurpose amphibious assault ship USS Bataan (LHD 5) Feb. 6, to take a firsthand look at the ship's capabilities and express gratitude for Bataan's support to Operation Unified Response.
Prime Minister Jean-Max Bellerive toured Bataan's well deck, where disaster relief supplies are being moved ashore by air cushion landing craft (LCACs), and visited with recovering Haitian patients in the ship's medical ward.
"It is great to give the prime minister the opportunity to see firsthand the way we do operations and how we are caring for his fellow citizens," said Capt. Sam Howard, Bataan's commanding officer. "All of us are personally commited to this mission."
Bellerive met with leadership from Bataan and gave his heartfelt thanks to the captain and crew for all they've done to help Haiti and its citizens.
"We are very grateful. Your efforts here have been very impressive and they will be long lasting," said Bellerive. "I don't know if I'm the first to say thank you, but thank you."
Bataan flew the flag of Haiti, which was presented to the Prime Minister on behalf of the crew.
Bataan along with the amphibious dock landing ships USS Carter Hall (LSD 50), USS Fort McHenry (LSD 43) and USS Guston Hall (LSD 44) are on station off the coast of Haiti, supporting Operation Unified Response, and international commitment to provide relief for the victims of Haiti's devastating earthquake.