Guterres Calls Again for Help for Haiti

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‘I  reiterate my call on all partners to increase support for Haiti’s national police in the form of financing, training or equipment…’ – UN Secretary-General António Guterres

By Sue-Ann Wayow

ALL nations with the capacity to assist Haiti is being called upon to do so by United Nations (UN) Secretary-General António Guterres.

Speaking at a press conference on Monday alongside Prime Minister Dr Keith Rowley, Guterres said Haiti’s financial and security situation was worsening especially with an election due to be held by December 2023.

At the press conference held at the Diplomatic Centre in St Ann’s, Guterres said he arrived in Trinidad from Haiti where the security situation was rapidly deteriorating and humanitarian needs were soaring.

He said, “I  reiterate my call on all partners to increase support for Haiti’s national police in the form of financing, training or equipment and we must collectively do more to help the Haitian people chart their best towards elections and the political solution.”

Guterres said there could not be strong democratic institutions without strong security systems and vice versa.

He has been advocating for a deployment of an international security force authorised by the UN Security Council which would be able to cooperate with Haiti’s national police to dismantle the gangs that create the violence.

“I register that most African and Caribbean countries have shown their availability to participate in these efforts and I appeal to those that have the capacity that is needed to do so to also volunteer themselves,” Guterres said.

He said countries with robust police forces added with robust equipment and logistical support would be more fitting to assist with Haiti’s situation.

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While the African countries and Caribbean countries were volunteering, “most of them have limited capacity.”

Guterres said, “I think we need to have the key players also having a very strong commitment to also participate in such an operation.”

Dr Rowley also said that CARICOM has been engaged with other countries, Canada in particular.

“It is a major item on the agenda and will be discussed,” he said as leaders of CARICOM countries gather in Port of Spain to commemorate its 50th anniversary.

At a press conference in Haiti on Saturday, Guterres said, “Every day counts. If we do not act now, instability and violence will have a lasting impact on generations of Haitians.”

Following, protests, postponements and the assassination of Haitian president Jovenel Moïse’s in 2021, on December 21, 2022, Prime Minister Ariel Henry signed an agreement with political parties, civil society organisations and private sector members to hold the elections in 2023, with the new government scheduled to be sworn in on February 7, 2024.


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