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UN Security Council approves Haiti force to combat gangs

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UN Security Council approves Haiti force to combat gangs

Kenya-led force for Haiti aims to rein in powerful gangs and clear the way for long-delayed electionsUN Security Council resolution passed with 13 votes in favour and two abstentions, from Russia and ChinaUnited NationsAgence France-PressePublished: 1:40pm, 3 Oct, 2023Why you can trust SCMP

The United Nations Security Council approved a Kenyan-led mission aiming to bring stability to Haiti, a year after leaders in the violence-ravaged Caribbean nation first pleaded for help.

The Western Hemisphere’s poorest nation has been in free fall, with armed gangs taking over parts of the country and unleashing brutal violence, and the economy and public health system also in tatters.

Haitian Prime Minister Ariel Henry and UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres have been calling since late 2022 for international support to back the fledgling police force, but much of the global community had been jaded by the failure of earlier interventions in Haiti.

Monday’s resolution passed with 13 votes in favour, with China and Russia abstaining. It was hailed by Haitian foreign minister Jean Victor Geneus as bringing a “glimmer of hope for people who have been suffering the consequences of a difficult political, socio-economic, security and humanitarian situation for too long”.

A breakthrough in plans for the force came in July, when Kenya volunteered to lead the force and send 1,000 personnel.

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