Local March 18, 2023 | 10:28 am

Dominican Republic calls for international aid to assist Haiti in the face of violence

Santo Domingo, DR
Dominican Foreign Minister Roberto Alvarez has reiterated his appeal to the international community to help Haiti deal with the situation of violence in which the country is mired.

“I make this call again to the international community to provide assistance to the Haitian National Police, so that they can resolve the climate of violence,” said Alvarez in an interview with EFE on the occasion of the Ibero-American Summit that Santo Domingo will host on March 24 and 25.

According to the Dominican minister, “without a resolution of that aspect it is impossible to carry out not only a general election, not even a distribution of vaccines in an effective way or fuel (…) How can any foreign investment be considered under circumstances like these?”.

The objective of this new appeal by the Dominican Republic is “in some way to collaborate with the Haitian government and people to find a way to resolve”, in particular, the situation of violence, he said.

In addition, Álvarez stressed that the situation in neighboring Haiti is putting “great pressure on public services in the Dominican Republic, primarily”.

For all these reasons, the Haitian crisis will be present at the Ibero-American Summit, he said, in order to continue “the process of raising awareness of the difficulties we are facing”.

Last October, the Haitian Prime Minister, Ariel Henry, requested the dispatch of a foreign force to deal with the situation.

Following that request, UN Secretary General António Guterres proposed the establishment of a “rapid action force” with military personnel from one or more countries and not under the UN flag, but no response from the international community has yet been forthcoming.

The always difficult situation in Haiti worsened further with the July 2021 assassination of then President Jovenel Moise.

Armed gangs have become strong and control much of the country, generating violence that has forced thousands of people to flee their homes and causing deaths every day.

In the midst of a crisis at all levels, cholera has also made a new appearance in Haiti, where it has already caused at least 600 deaths since last October.

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