Story by Daniel Stewart
The United Nations warned Friday of an increase in gang attacks and violence in Haiti, which reportedly totaled 95 fatalities in a single day in July 2022.
According to the new report, between July 8 and December 31, 2022, gangs killed 263 people while 285 others were injured, and four disappeared, all in the Brooklyn neighborhood of Cité Soleil. In addition, 57 gang rapes of women and girls reportedly took place.
The highest number recorded in a single day was on July 8, when a total of 95 people, including six children, were killed in gang attacks in Haiti.
“The findings of this report are shocking,” said UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Volker Türk during a visit to Haiti this week, while urging attention to the “harassment and terror” sown by criminal gangs, especially in Cité Soleil, on the outskirts of the Haitian capital, where attacks have increased dramatically.
In addition, the new report by the Human Rights Service of the UN Integrated Office in Haiti (BINUH) warns that the situation in the aforementioned neighborhood is a reflection of the reality also experienced in other areas of Haiti where gangs are armed.
Among them, the gang ‘G-9 in Family and Allies’, which makes use of snipers to create “an almost permanent climate of terror” due to the use of this type of weaponry to arbitrarily kill “anyone who passed through their field of vision”, according to the report.
At the same time, the gang used other tactics to restrict the movement of people and block access to basic goods and sanitation, which has further impoverished the local population and worsened the “already extremely unhealthy” region.
This has encouraged the spread of infectious diseases such as cholera, the first cases of which were reported in the borough of Brooklyn in early October 2022, the first in the country since 2019.
In this regard, Türk has appealed to the international community to deploy “a specialized support force with a specific time frame” to carry out a “comprehensive and precise” plan to curb the violence in Haiti, the UN official said during a press conference on Friday.
According to UN data, the recent political and humanitarian crises in Haiti have left nearly five million people – half of the country’s population – in a situation of acute famine. A situation that has worsened as a result of the turf war between a coalition of gangs taking place in the region.
File – Haitian police officers in the capital Port-au-Prince. – JOSE A. IGLESIAS / ZUMA PRESS / CONTACTOPHOTO© Provided by News 360
Source: (EUROPA PRESS)