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USCRI Update: Country Conditions in Haiti

By USCRI May 10, 2024

On February 29, 2024, a surge in gang violence erupted in Haiti, primarily in the capital of Port-au-Prince, that today continues to spiral the nation into a rapidly deteriorating humanitarian and protection crisis. This new wave of attacks perpetrated by armed gangs in Port-au-Prince marked an unprecedented level of violence that had been intensifying since the assassination of Haiti’s former-President Jovenel Moïse in his home on July 7, 2021. Haiti has been without a president since and has not held elections since 2016.

Gangs now control about 80-90 percent of Port-au-Prince and this control continues to spread to other areas of the country once considered safe, forcing thousands from their homes. Attacks on civilians include killings, kidnappings, sexual violence, looting, and other widespread abuses. On March 3, 2024, the Haitian government declared a state of emergency and curfew following the escalation in violence that included a storming of two large prisons in Haiti by armed gangs who released over 3,000 inmates. The unrest occurred while Prime Minister Ariel Henry was in Kenya to sign an agreement permitting the deployment of Kenyan police to lead the United Nations (UN) Security Council-mandated Multinational Security Support (MSS) mission to Haiti.

Gangs in Haiti have long demanded Henry’s resignation, and in an effort to block his return, on March 4 they attempted to seize control of the international airport. On March 11, Prime Minister Henry announced that he would resign upon the establishment of a transitional council. On April 25, the Transitional Presidential Council was sworn in, and Henry presented his official resignation letter. Gangs continue to demand a presence in decision-making processes and inflict violence and instability across the country.

The following update outlines current conditions in Haiti and the resulting humanitarian situation as of May 2024.

 

Click Here to Read the Complete Update.

 

USCRI, founded in 1911, is a non-governmental, not-for-profit international organization committed to working on behalf of refugees and immigrants and their transition to a dignified life.

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