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Haiti - FLASH : At least 20 civilians killed in gang fighting zones
28/04/2022 09:13:44

Haiti - FLASH : At least 20 civilians killed in gang fighting zones
Since Sunday, April 24, 2022, the "400 mawozo" Gang which controls Croix-des-Bouquets has been facing the rival "Chen Mechan" Gang which controls the areas of Croix-des-Missions and Butte Boyer. The men of "400 mawozo" are trying to regain control of territory lost in 2018 to the benefit of "Chen Mechan", in particular Butte Boyer.

According to the latest reports from the Directorate of Civil Protection at least 20 civilians were killed between 24 and 26 April, including a family of 8, three young women and three children.

As of April 26, "Médecins Sans Frontières France" had already received 22 injured people in its hospital in Tabarre.

No less than a dozen houses were burned down, particularly in the Marécage and Butte Boyer neighborhoods. The information collected from the affected people indicates that the majority of the population of the neighborhoods of Tabarre 16, Tabarre 14, Impasse Bellevue and Aquafine have fled their homes. Civil Protection specifies that all this information has not yet been verified due to the complexity of access to combat zones...

Several hundred people from Butte Boyer, Croix-des-Missions, Marecage and Mapou were forced to leave their homes between 24 and 27 April following violent armed clashes between the "400 Mawozo" and "Chen Mechan" gangs in Cross of the Bouquets

Residents including from Butte Boyer and Santo 17 took refuge in a public square in Clercine and the Town Hall of Tabarre. Sleeping in makeshift shelters the displaced, exposed to the risk of gender-based violence for women, girls and children...

Businesses, stores and schools in the areas of confrontation have all closed.

The conflict zone is highly strategic for the Gangs because it allows control of road access to the northern half of the country as well as between the Haitian capital and the Dominican Republic.

In this context, access to the North departments of North, North-West, North-East and Artibonite and the Dominican Republic by RN#1 and RN#3 is currently compromised, which risks further isolate the capital since the national road 2 linking the southern departments is already under the control of armed gangs.

Note that the confrontation zone is located a few hundred meters north of Toussaint Louverture International Airport and that earlier this week a stray bullet hit the helicopter of the United Nation Humanitarian Air Service (UNHAS) which was on the tarmac of Guy Malary domestic airport, adjacent to the international airport.

The Haitian authorities and the National Police of Haiti (PNH) have made no statement on this gang war that paralyzes all activity in the North of Port-au-Prince nor provided any assessment...

The Citizen Protection Office (OPC) "denounces the silence of the authorities" in the face of the violence of armed gangs in the area of ​​the plain of the cul-de-sac and "condemns the inaction of the current leaders which translates, in many ways, a form of cynicism or contempt for human rights, particularly the right to life and security."

The OPC believes that the conflict is likely to intensify in the coming days, which will lead to new victims and new population migrations...

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