A disastrous earthquake hit Haiti in 2010, leaving the country in deep distress. Reconstruction failed to address the systemic problems underlying its extreme socio-economic inequality and endemic political and gang violence. Following the COVID-19 pandemic, the assassination of President Jovenel Moïse in July 2021 and a bout of natural disasters soon thereafter, Haiti’s humanitarian plight has gone from bad to worse. Crisis Group aims to shed light on the sources of Haiti’s strife and supports core reforms to the security sector and state that could pave the way for credible elections, improved security and clean government.

CrisisWatch Haiti

Unchanged Situation

Ever-worsening gang violence displaced thousands, Kenya’s supreme court blocked police deployment to Haiti, and negotiations to resolve political crisis failed to produce breakthrough.

Gang efforts to expand territory triggered mass displacement. Alleged members of Grand Ravine gang 1 Nov launched offensive in Mariani district south-west of capital Port-au-Prince to expand territory along National Route 2 and increase extortion opportunities; International Organization for Migration 6 Nov estimated 2,500 people were displaced in five days of fighting. Meanwhile, Iskar Andrice, one of G9 gang coalition’s founders and key leaders, 12 Nov died in unclear circumstances; leader of rival Gpèp coalition Ti Gabriel next day launched attacks in several G9-controlled areas of capital’s Cité Soleil neighbourhood to expand turf; OCHA 17 Nov said clashes killed at least 166 and displaced over 1,000. Iskar’s successor David Ganier aka Black Alex Mana, 21 Nov killed by member of same coalition, James Edmond aka Benji, replacing him as gang head. Bel-Air gang 19 Nov launched offensive to invade Solino neighbourhood of capital.

Kenya’s high court extended orders blocking police deployment to Haiti. Kenya’s parliament 16 Nov approved govt request to deploy 1,000 police officers to Haiti as part of multinational support mission. Hours later, however, Supreme Court extended Oct order blocking deployment until it rules on case in late Jan. Kenyan President Ruto 21 Nov said mission should be 5,000-strong. Meanwhile, poll by Haitian company Diagnostic and Development early Oct found 70% of Haitians favoured deployment of international armed force.

Negotiations between interim govt and opposition made little progress. CARICOM (body of Caribbean nations) experts 8-14 Nov visited Haiti for fourth round of negotiations between govt and opposition but no agreement was reached. Meanwhile, president of High Council for Transition Mirlande Manigat 2 Nov criticised lack of progress in implementing Dec 2022 agreement between acting PM Henry, opposition and civil society to organise new elections.

Dispute with Dominican Republic over canal construction continued. Dominican soldiers 7 Nov breached border wall near site where disputed Haitian canal is being built into Massacre River; Haitians immediately protested, setting up barricades at border and burning tires (see Dominican Republic).

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In The News

21 Σεπ 2023
[The police in Haiti] are completely outgunned by the gangs right now. The Guardian
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Diego Da Rin

Consultant, Latin America and Caribbean
1 Αυγ 2023
The Haitian security forces and U.S. forces present in Haiti are not able to enter the areas where most kidnapped people are held. ABC News
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Diego Da Rin

Consultant, Latin America and Caribbean
13 Φεβ 2023
[The gangs in Haiti are] running out of tools to control people. They extort, but there’s only so much money that can be extorted from people that are really poor. AP

Renata Segura

Deputy Program Director, Latin America and Caribbean

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Diego Da Rin

Diego Da Rin

Consultant, Latin America and Caribbean

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