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Haiti - UN : Volker Türk launches an appeal for a multinational mission in Haiti
29/09/2023 09:27:05

Haiti - UN : Volker Türk launches an appeal for a multinational mission in Haiti
Thursday, September 28, 2023, the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, Volker Türk, today issued a clarion call for a multinational security support mission to help the Haitian National Police (HNP) combat the cycle of violence which has permeated all levels of society and exacerbated a dire security and human rights crisis.

"Every day the lives of Haitian people become even harder, but it is vital that we do not give up. Their situation is not hopeless. With international support and resolve, the Haitian people can tackle this grave insecurity, and find a way out of this chaos," Türk said.

The High Commissioner’s latest report on the human rights situation in Haiti stresses that the deployment of a multinational security support mission is essential to assist the HNP in tackling organized crime, armed gangs and international trafficking in arms, drugs and people.

It details the findings of the High Commissioner’s Designated Expert on the human rights situation in Haiti, William O’Neill, who visited the country in June 2023. He observed the gravity of situation on the ground and the importance of first stabilizing security. https://www.haitilibre.com/en/news-39888-haiti-human-rights-end-of-mission-of-the-independent-expert-william-o-neill.html

Between 1 January and 15 August 2023, at least 2,439 people were killed, 902 injured and 951 kidnapped, the report states. The alarming escalation of the violence registered since the start of 2023 is now affecting all communes in the metropolitan area of ‎Port-au-Prince, including some considered safe until recently.

Gangs have shown increasing brutality, mutilating and burning bodies in public and then sharing the horrific images on social media.

Women and girls are particularly exposed to gang violence, including sexual violence, such as collective rape. Gangs continue to recruit children and use them as lookouts or messengers, as well as involving them in kidnappings and robberies.

Once the security situation is stabilized, there needs to be investment in the development of socio-economic opportunities to enable the people of Haiti to access better living conditions and ensure lasting stability and prosperity of the country, the report says.

Strengthening State institutions is another priority, it states. In Haiti, impunity and decades of poor governance and corruption have contributed to the current crisis "The cycle of violence never ends because rarely is anyone held to account," the report says.

"Lives are at stake," Türk said. "Time is of the essence – we need to comprehend the sense of urgency this crisis demands."

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