All posts tagged: Haiti

Haitian aid workers worry American Christians donors could worsen crisis

Haitian aid workers worry American Christians donors could worsen crisis

(RNS) — As the security crisis in Haiti continues, the humanitarian aid group Haiti Family Care Network is urging U.S. Christian donors to refrain from worsening the situation by donating to orphanages and to redirect their efforts instead toward initiatives helping parents support their children. “There are actually better ways to care for the needs of children than building and supporting orphanages,” said Heather Nozea, chair of the network, which is part of Better Care Network, based in Guatemala. In 2021, five humanitarian organizations created Haiti Family Care Network to change how relief for children works in the impoverished, often chaotically led nation. In 2011, the year after a 7.1 magnitude earthquake killed some 300,000, mostly around the capital, Port-au-Prince, orphanages proliferated from about 300 to 754, despite their failures to provide appropriate care for children. “Everyone assumed that the best way to respond was by building and supporting new orphanages and it became a solution to problems without actually addressing the real problem,” said Nozea, who has worked in Haiti for eight years for …

Transitional Council in Haiti Embraces New Changes Following Turmoil as Gang Violence Grips Country

Transitional Council in Haiti Embraces New Changes Following Turmoil as Gang Violence Grips Country

PORT-AU-PRINCE, Haiti (AP) — A transitional council tasked with choosing new leaders for Haiti is changing the way it operates in a move that surprised many as gang violence consumes the country. Instead of having a single council president, four longtime politicians will take turns leading the council every five months, according to two members who were not authorized to publicly share the changes because they had not yet been announced. The members told The Associated Press late Wednesday that the council also will now consider five members a majority, instead of four. The council is composed of nine members, seven of which have voting powers. “That’s a real switch,” Robert Fatton, a Haitian politics expert at the University of Virginia, said of the changes. “I think it’s a good thing that they’re really going to share power now. … It is something that is very rare in Haitian politics.” The four members who will share power are original council president Edgard Leblanc Fils, ex-senator Louis Gérald Gilles, former presidential candidate Leslie Voltaire and ex-ambassador …

Residents flee as Haitian gangs launch new gun and arson attacks in capital | Haiti

Residents flee as Haitian gangs launch new gun and arson attacks in capital | Haiti

Gunmen have launched a string of fresh attacks in Port-au-Prince, burning homes and exchanging gunfire with police for hours in one of the biggest outbreaks of violence since Haiti’s new prime minister was announced. The attacks, which forced hundreds to flee their homes, began late on Wednesday in neighborhoods including Solino and Delmas 18, 20 and 24, south-west of the main international airport, which has remained closed for nearly two months. “The gangs started burning everything in sight,” said a man called Néne, who declined to give his last name out of fear. “I was hiding in a corner all night.” He and a friend were carrying a dusty red suitcase between them that was stuffed with clothes – the only things they could save. The clothes belonged to Néne’s children, whom he had rushed out of Delmas 18 around dawn during a pause in the fighting. Neighborhoods that once bustled with traffic and pedestrians were like ghost towns shortly after sunrise, with a heavy silence blanketing the area except for the occasional bleating from …

Haiti endures violence, poverty, chaos as world looks elsewhere

Haiti endures violence, poverty, chaos as world looks elsewhere

PORT-AU-PRINCE, Haiti — Almost all the beds at La Paix University Hospital are occupied. Critical medical supplies, including blood collection tubes, are running low. Doctors are operating without blood; they fear they’ll soon run out of anesthesia, too. The stream of patients, meanwhile, is unrelenting. There are those who have been attacked by the armed gangs that control 80 percent of the capital. Stroke patients. Women in labor. People with kidney failure who need dialysis — and are turned away because it’s not available. Source link

New Haiti PM tasked with stabilising violence-racked country | Conflict News

New Haiti PM tasked with stabilising violence-racked country | Conflict News

Fritz Belizaire put in place as authorities battle gangs for control of the crisis-ridden country. Haiti’s transitional council has nominated Fritz Belizaire as the new prime minister of the crisis-ridden Caribbean country. The council on Tuesday tapped the former sports minister to take over from interim prime minister Michel Patrick Boisvert. The previously low-profile new premier faces a daunting task of trying to stabilise the island nation, which is mired in chaos as it battles violent armed gangs that have taken control of many areas. The council had earlier named Edgard Leblanc Fils, a former senate president, as president of the panel. The appointments follow weeks of political deadlock and in-fighting on the council, which was convened last month after former Prime Minister Ariel Henry resigned. Belizaire’s nomination was supported by four of the seven voting members on the nine-member panel. Other members noted that they were unfamiliar with him. The council is also tasked with appointing a cabinet and an electoral council, which should pave the way for Haiti’s first general elections since 2016. However, …

Haiti’s transitional council to elect new president Tuesday

Haiti’s transitional council to elect new president Tuesday

Haiti’s seven-member transitional council will vote for the country’s next president Tuesday, a week after it formally assumed power in the chaotic Caribbean nation. The vote is the next step in efforts to restore stability and order in Haiti, which has been plagued by gang violence since the 2021 assassination of President Jovenel Moise. The island plunged further into instability after a plane carrying then-Prime Minister Ariel Henry was forced to land in the U.S. Caribbean territory of Puerto Rico when it was denied entry into the Dominican Republic, which shares the island of Hispaniola with Haiti. Henry had departed Haiti the week before on a mission to the South American nation of Guyana and the east African nation of Kenya to gain support for the deployment of a multinational United Nations peacekeeping force to Haiti. The gangs used Henry’s absence to attack the National Penitentiary and another prison in Port-au-Prince, killing several people and allowing thousands of inmates to escape into the city. Gangs also staged shooting attacks on Haiti’s main airport. Henry was …

Haiti Transitional Government to Vote for President on Tuesday

Haiti Transitional Government to Vote for President on Tuesday

(Reuters) – Haiti’s transition council on Saturday said it will vote for the country’s next president on Tuesday as part of efforts to bring the Caribbean country under control amid rampant gang violence. The transition council took power in a ceremony on Thursday, formalizing the resignation of former Prime Minster Ariel Henry. The transitional government’s mandate runs until February 2026, by when there are slated to be elections, and cannot be renewed. The council’s installation is seen as a key step toward the deployment of a multinational security mission Henry requested in 2022 and the United Nations approved more than six months ago. The election will take place at the prime minister’s Villa d’Accueil office on Tuesday morning, a statement said. (Reporting by Oliver Griffin; Editing by Chris Reese) Copyright 2024 Thomson Reuters. Source link

Haiti on the Precipice | Pooja Bhatia

Haiti on the Precipice | Pooja Bhatia

On Thursday, Ariel Henry formally resigned as prime minister of Haiti. Few were grateful for his service. Over thirty-two months, the longest premiership since 1987, Henry presided over a country where life grew steadily worse. For the past five years armed groups had terrorized the capital, Port-au-Prince; in January they intensified their assault. On February 29 they united forces and launched a full-scale uprising: they engineered two prison breaks and freed some 4,700 prisoners, engaged in firefights with the outgunned national police, shut down the airport, torched commissariats, and attacked banks and private homes.  When the uprising began Henry was away in Nairobi finalizing the terms of a foreign intervention, blessed by the United Nations and brokered by the United States. Kenya was to lead a “Multinational Security Support Mission,” which would deploy a thousand police officers, a woefully inadequate number, to quell the violence in Haiti. On March 5, when the prime minister tried to return to Port-au-Prince, armed groups did not allow him to land at the airport. Authorities in the Dominican Republic …

Haiti Prime Minister Henry resigns, Boisvert takes over as interim leader

Haiti Prime Minister Henry resigns, Boisvert takes over as interim leader

Michel Patrick Boisvert (center), who was named interim prime minister by outgoing Prime Minister Ariel Henry, attends the swearing-in ceremony of the transitional council tasked with selecting Haiti’s new prime minister and cabinet, in Port-au-Prince, Haiti. Ramon Espinosa/AP hide caption toggle caption Ramon Espinosa/AP Michel Patrick Boisvert (center), who was named interim prime minister by outgoing Prime Minister Ariel Henry, attends the swearing-in ceremony of the transitional council tasked with selecting Haiti’s new prime minister and cabinet, in Port-au-Prince, Haiti. Ramon Espinosa/AP Haiti’s de facto prime minister, Ariel Henry, has resigned and a new transitional council has been sworn in in the capital of Port-au-Prince. Finance Minister Michel Patrick Boisvert has been appointed as the interim prime minister. The nine-person transitional council, including seven who have voting powers, was sworn in during a small ceremony in the grounds of the National Palace, with few invited guests. Local news outlets published video of the moment in which the members of the council promised to protect constitution — as gunfire can be heard in the distance. Première …

Ariel Henry Resigns as Prime Minister as Haiti Installs Ruling Council

Ariel Henry Resigns as Prime Minister as Haiti Installs Ruling Council

The prime minister of Haiti, Ariel Henry, formally signed his resignation letter on Wednesday, paving the way for a new government and bringing a measure of political stability to a nation mired in gang violence and an unfolding humanitarian crisis. With the sound of gunshots as a backdrop, the nine members of a transitional council took the oath of office early on Thursday in the National Palace. “We have served the nation in difficult times,” wrote Mr. Henry, whose resignation letter bore a Los Angeles address. “I sympathize with the losses and suffering endured by our compatriots during this period.” Mr. Henry, who has been unable to return to the country because of security concerns, had said in March that he would step down once the transitional council was established. Michel Patrick Boisvert, a former Haitian minister of economy and finance who stepped in for Mr. Henry in his absence, was named as acting prime minister. He and the new governing council now face the challenge of restoring order in Haiti, reforming the constitution and …