Global perspective Human stories



Displaced people shelter in a boxing arena in downtown Port-au-Prince after fleeing their homes during gang attacks in August 2023.
© Giles Clarke

I encourage the international community to continue to stand in solidarity with the people of Haiti. In this sense, and at this very critical and unique juncture for Haiti, I urge all Member States to continue funding the Humanitarian Response Plan; and with no further delay to firm up pledges for the deployment of the Multinational Security Support mission to Haiti.

María Isabel Salvador, UN Special Representative for Haiti, in briefing to the Security Council on the situation in the country, 22 Apr '24

UN Special Representative

María Isabel Salvador, UN Special Representative for Haiti

María Isabel Salvador, Special Representative and head of the UN Integrated Office in Haiti (BINUH), briefs members of the Security Council on the situation in the country.
UN Photo/Loey Felipe

On 1 March, Secretary-General António Guterres announced the appointment of María Isabel Salvador of Ecuador as his Special Representative for Haiti and Head of the United Nations Integrated Office in Haiti (BINUH).

Ms. Salvador succeeded Helen Meagher La Lime of the United States to whom the Secretary-General is grateful for her dedicated service and steadfast commitment to the work of the United Nations in Haiti.

Ms. Salvador brings to this position over 25 years of experience in managerial, advisory, political, and diplomatic functions. 

She has served as President of the Governing Council of the Galapagos (2013-2015), Permanent Representative of Ecuador to the Organization of American States (2010-2013), Member of the Andean Parliament (2009-2010), as well as Minister of Foreign Affairs, Trade and Integration (2007-2008) and Minister of Tourism (2005-2007) of Ecuador. 

She also has vast management experience from the private sector having served as General Manager and Legal Representative of Air France in Ecuador (1995-2005).

She was Director of External Relations at UDLA University of the Americas in Ecuador, a post she has held since 2015.

Ms. Salvador holds a Master’s degree in Business Administration from Andrés Bello University, Chile, and the European University of Madrid, Spain, and a Bachelor’s degree in French Language and Civilization from the University of Geneva in Switzerland. She is currently completing a law degree in Human and Nature Rights at the University of the Americas in Ecuador. 

She is fluent in English and French, in addition to her native Spanish.

UN’s New Approach to Cholera

On 19 August 2016, the Secretary-General announced the United Nations’ new approach to cholera in Haiti. The Secretary-General indicated that he deeply regrets the terrible suffering the people of Haiti have endured as a result of the cholera epidemic and that the United Nations has a moral responsibility to the victims of the cholera epidemic and to support Haiti in overcoming the epidemic and building sound water, sanitation and health systems. He stressed that eliminating cholera from Haiti will take the full commitment of the Haitian Government and the international community and, crucially, the resources to fulfil this shared duty.

UN Integrated Office

Ulrika Richardson, Deputy Special Representative for the United Nations Integrated Office in Haiti (BINUH), Resident and Humanitarian Coordinator in Haiti.

Ulrika Richardson (centre), Deputy Special Representative for the UN Integrated Office in Haiti (BINUH), Resident and Humanitarian Coordinator in Haiti, visits the National School of Miserne in Les Cayes.
© UNOCHA/Christian Cricboom

Ms. Richardson, a Swedish national, has dedicated more than 30 years to international cooperation. Most of her professional life has been devoted to international civil service in the field through the United Nations primarily in West and Central Africa, the Caribbean as well as Western Balkans and South-East Europe. Ms. Richardson has extensive experience in a broad range of development, conflict, post-conflict, and humanitarian settings in a wide range of complex political, socio-economic, fragility, and human rights contexts with a strong track record in advocating for women and children’s rights. She is also known to have in-depth knowledge of the multidimensional challenges Small Island Developing States are facing.

BINUH’s mandate focuses on two main areas:

Advising the Government of Haiti in promoting and strengthening political stability and good governance, including the rule of law, preserving and advancing a peaceful and stable environment, including through supporting an inclusive inter-Haitian national dialogue, and protecting and promoting human rights; and 

In an advisory role, assisting the Government with its efforts in the following areas: dialogue and reforms; elections; police professionalism; community violence reduction and gang violence; justice reform; and prison condition and human rights protection and accountability. 

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