The situation in Haiti, plagued by gang violence, has further deteriorated in recent months, with the number of serious crimes reaching “new records”, the UN representative in the country warned on Monday.
“Unfortunately, the security situation on the ground continues to deteriorate as growing gang violence has thrown the lives of Haitians into chaos and serious crimes have increased sharply, reaching new records,” said Maria Isabel Salvador before the UN Security Council, hoping that the expected deployment of a multinational intervention force could improve things.
According to the UN Secretary General’s report on Haiti, published Monday, “major crimes, including intentional homicides and kidnappings, have experienced an unprecedented increase, mainly in the departments of Ouest and Artibonite “.
Thus, between July 1 and September 30, the national police reported 1,239 homicides, compared to 577 during the same period in 2022. And from July to September, 701 people — including 221 women, 8 girls and 18 boys — were killed. been victims of kidnappings, i.e. 244% more than in 2022 at the same period.
The UN is also concerned about the murders perpetrated by self-defense groups that appeared last spring: “388 people were lynched between April 24 and September 30 because of their presumed membership in gangs,” according to the report. .
While the violence of the gangs which control more than half of the capital Port-au-Prince continues to worsen, the UN Security Council gave the green light in early October to the deployment of a multinational mission, non-UN, led by Kenya, to help the overwhelmed Haitian police.
“The resumption of control by the Haitian police is a precondition for the holding of credible and inclusive elections,” insisted Maria Isabel Salvador, while no election has taken place since 2016.
The Security Council’s green light has “created expectations on the part of millions of Haitians at home and abroad,” she added.
“It sparked a glimmer of hope to finally see the light at the end of the tunnel, which is not an oncoming train.”
According to the Security Council resolution, Kenya and the other countries that will participate in this force, the contours of which are still unclear, must develop the operation plan for the mission.