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News > Latin America

UN Peacekeepers Fire Tear Gas at Frustrated Haitians

  • A Haitian policeman pushes back Hurricane Matthew victims waiting for the delivery of food south west of Haiti, Oct. 13, 2016.

    A Haitian policeman pushes back Hurricane Matthew victims waiting for the delivery of food south west of Haiti, Oct. 13, 2016. | Photo: AFP

Published 16 October 2016
Opinion

More than 100 people were protesting the late delivery of aid shortly before the arrival of the U.N. chief.

Shortly before U.N. chief Ban Ki-moon arrived in Haiti, United Nations peacekeepers fired tear gas on Haitians who were growing frustrated with the late aid delivery that arrived over a week after their country was devastated by Hurricane Matthew.

RELATED:
To Help Haiti, Don't Donate to American Red Cross: Haitians

Reports said that at least 100 residents of Les Cayes were protesting at a U.N. base as aid trucks arrived, with local police and Senegalese U.N. troops firing tear gas to disperse the crowd, which in turn provoked rock-throwing by the protesters.

The Category 4 hurricane tore through Haiti on Oct. 4, killing about 1,000 people and and leaving 175,000 homeless, while 1.4 million people are now in need of humanitarian aid.

"We are going to mobilize as many resources and as much medical support as we can to first of all stop the cholera epidemic and second support the families of the victims," Ban said at a news conference on his return to Port-au-Prince.

While he condemned the attacks and looting of the aid trucks, the U.N. secretary-general added, "We understand the impatience and the anger of the population who are waiting for emergency relief. We are doing all we can to facilitate the arrival of the assistance soon as possible."

RELATED:
The Supposed Deforestation of Haiti Is a Lie

The international body has launched a flash appeal for US$120 million to help Haiti cope with its worst humanitarian crisis since a devastating 2010 earthquake.

So far, only about 13 percent of the needed funds have been raised to help stave off famine and serious health crises, including cholera.

The looting is “obviously a concern for the coordination and delivery of aid," Mourad Wahba, the U.N. humanitarian coordinator in Haiti, told AFP. However, he added, “the response must focus on more than security. People are hungry and we must successfully unblock the roads to help them."

Shortly before U.N. chief Ban Ki-moon arrived in Haiti, United Nations peacekeepers fired tear gas on Haitians who were growing frustrated with the late aid delivery that arrived over a week after their country was devastated by Hurricane Matthew.

RELATED:
To Help Haiti, Don't Donate to American Red Cross: Haitians

Reports said that at least 100 residents of Les Cayes were protesting at a U.N. base as aid trucks arrived, with local police and Senegalese U.N. troops firing tear gas to disperse the crowd, which in turn provoked rock-throwing by the protesters.

The Category 4 hurricane tore through Haiti on Oct. 4, killing about 1,000 people and and leaving 175,000 homeless, while 1.4 million people are now in need of humanitarian aid.

"We are going to mobilize as many resources and as much medical support as we can to first of all stop the cholera epidemic and second support the families of the victims," Ban said at a news conference on his return to Port-au-Prince.

While he condemned the attacks and looting of the aid trucks, the U.N. secretary-general added, "We understand the impatience and the anger of the population who are waiting for emergency relief. We are doing all we can to facilitate the arrival of the assistance soon as possible."

RELATED:
The Supposed Deforestation of Haiti Is a Lie

The international body has launched a flash appeal for US$120 million to help Haiti cope with its worst humanitarian crisis since a devastating 2010 earthquake.

So far, only about 13 percent of the needed funds have been raised to help stave off famine and serious health crises, including cholera.

The looting is “obviously a concern for the coordination and delivery of aid," Mourad Wahba, the U.N. humanitarian coordinator in Haiti, told AFP. However, he added, “the response must focus on more than security. People are hungry and we must successfully unblock the roads to help them."

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