- The 15-member council on Monday adopted a resolution that authorises the Kenya-led 'Multinational Security Support mission' to support Haiti police in combating the gangs.
- The resolution, drafted by the United States and Ecuador, was approved with 13 votes in favour, while China and Russia abstained from the vote.
President William Ruto Tuesday welcomed the United Nations Security Council’s approval of Kenya-led security mission to Haiti amid gang violence that has rocked the Caribbean country’s capital Port-au-Prince for over a year.
The 15-member council on Monday adopted a resolution that authorises the Kenya-led 'Multinational Security Support mission' to support Haiti police in combating the gangs.
The resolution, drafted by the United States and Ecuador, was approved with 13 votes in favour, while China and Russia abstained from the vote.
Ruto welcomed the council’s decision terming it “an overdue and critical instrument to define the multinational mission.”
The President described the mission as a moral obligation for the international community.
“The situation in Haiti demands, as a matter of humanitarian consideration, moral responsibility and fundamental justice, that actions be scaled up significantly to meet the demands of emergency relief, humanitarian aid, support for livelihoods and major interventions in public health and environmental protection,” he said.
Kenya has offered to send 1,000 troops to Haiti, while the Bahamas has committed 150 people as Jamaica, Antigua and Barbuda pledge to help.
The mission is also mandated to secure the country's critical infrastructure including air and seaports as well as other vital transit arteries and intersections.
Ruto said the mission will provide a different footprint in the history of international interventions in Haiti. He termed Kenya’s move an affirmation of Pan-African commitment to the continent's unity together with the African Union's policy of solidarity with the African Diaspora, bound by Africa’s colonial history.
“For us in Kenya, this mission is of special significance and critical urgency. We experienced the harrowing brunt of colonialism, as well as the long, difficult and frustrating struggle for freedom against those that can influence international institutions to frustrate justice,” Ruto said.
“In our struggle, we always had friends, not an overwhelming multitude of powerful allies, yet nevertheless true, loyal and determined friends. The people of Haiti, our dear friends, today stand in need. It is our fundamental moral obligation to be their friend indeed, by standing with them.”
“We shall succeed in Haiti. We must not fail the people of Haiti,” he added.
He said the mission is a foundational intervention, to provide the necessary conditions for Haiti to consolidate its development and governance.
“It is therefore absolutely essential that resources as well as operational scope available to the UN team, as well as other humanitarian and development actors on the ground in Haiti, be appropriately reinforced.”
He added the situation in Haiti demands, as a matter of humanitarian consideration, moral responsibility and fundamental justice, that actions be scaled up significantly to meet the demands of emergency relief, humanitarian aid, support for livelihoods and major interventions in public health and environmental protection.
“I also call the attention of states, international organisations, philanthropies and other institutions to attend to the severe environmental degradation in Haiti, which calls out for the urgent mobilisation of collective action.”
“We express our determination that this mission will provide a different footprint in the history of international interventions in Haiti, and emphasise that it is aimed solely at providing an appropriate environment for the leadership, both of the political and civil society sectors to usher in stability,development and democratic governance, through a political framework owned and driven by the people of Haiti,” he said.
Ruto said Kenya possesses excellent international peace-mediating, peace-making, peace-building and peace-keeping credentials.
“From East Timor and the formerYugoslavia to Eritrea and Angola all the way to Sierra Leone, we have always stood ready and willing to do our part to bring peace, security and stability. This is why we cannot turn away from Haiti. Doing nothing in the face of human suffering is therefore absolutely out of the question.”
Armed gangs have seized control of large tracks of Haiti’s land following intersecting public health, political and economic crises.
The Western Hemisphere's poorest country has been plunged into chaos since the assassination of President Jovenel Moïse in July 2021, at his private residence in Port-au-Prince.
United Nations figures show that more than 2,400 people have died in violence there since the start of the year.
There have been calls for an international force to intervene. Last month, the United States said up to a dozen countries had offered support while pledging its own logistical assistance.