With the end of the UN’s peacekeeping presence in Haiti in sight, the UN’s human rights chief told the Security Council on Wednesday that the country now stands “at the crossroads between peacekeeping and development”, urging all concerned parties to continue building on progress made, or “risk losing it” altogether.
Haiti is “laden with challenges, but also hope”, the head of the UN Mission in the country told the Security Council on Wednesday, against the backdrop of on-going political unrest in the Caribbean country.
In the wake of the 5.9 magnitude earthquake that struck north-west Haiti overnight, Secretary-General António Guterres on Sunday extended condolence to the island nations’ people and Government, and said the United Nations stands ready to help with the response.
Haitian President Jovenel Moïse on Thursday called on the international community to provide the necessary development aid as the Caribbean island nation prepares for the transition nest year of the United Nations mission to a non-peacekeeping presence in the country.
Amid external uncertainty and volatility, the economies of Latin America and the Caribbean will grow by an average of 1.5 per cent this year, thanks to a rebound in private consumption and a slight increase in investment, according to a United Nations flagship report issued on Thursday.
While acknowledging the right to peaceful assembly, the United Nations Security Council has strongly condemned recent violence in Haiti, sparked by protests against a Government announcement of fuel price increases, reportedly of up to 50 per cent, last Friday.
Commemorating the International Day of United Nations Peacekeepers at the Organization’s headquarters, in New York, Secretary-General António Guterres paid tribute to the service and sacrifice made by UN “blue helmets” for the cause of peace around the world.
The United Nations has already started to prepare for a post-peacekeeping presence in Haiti, a senior UN official said Tuesday, stressing there are many reasons to be optimistic that the country’s progress towards stability is now irreversible.
Strengthening the rule of law and improving the national police and the judicial system in Haiti will require political will on the part of the authorities, and the United Nations is determined to support this goal, said Assistant Secretary-General for Peacekeeping Operations Bintou Keita.
With only 50 per cent of medical facilities fully functional in Yemen, the United Nations health agency is striving to fill a “critical” healthcare shortage and will use a $9.1 million emergency response grant to assist 630,000 vulnerable people in districts around Sana’a and al-Hudayda.