UN mulls quick foreign troop deployment to ease Haiti crisis
The United Nations Security Council was evaluating options including the immediate activation of foreign troops to help free Haiti from the grip of gangs that has caused a scarcity of fuel, water and other basic supplies.
Such a force would "remove the threat posed by armed gangs and provide immediate protection to critical infrastructure and services," as well as secure the "free movement of water, fuel, food and medical supplies from main ports and airports to communities and health care facilities," according to a letter U.N. Secretary-General Antonio Guterres submitted to the council on Sunday.
The letter, which was seen by The Associated Press and has not been made public, said one or several member states would deploy the force to help Haiti's National Police.
It also states the secretary-general may deploy "additional U.N. capacities to support a ceasefire or humanitarian arrangements."
However, the letter notes that "a return to a more robust United Nations engagement in the form of peacekeeping remains a last resort if no decisive action is urgently taken by the international community in line with the outlined options and national law enforcement capacity proves unable to reverse the deteriorating security situation."
The letter was submitted after Haiti Prime Minister Ariel Henry and 18 high-ranking officials requested from international partners "the immediate deployment of a specialized armed force, in sufficient quantity," to stop the "criminal actions" of armed gangs across the country.
The request comes nearly a month after one of Haiti's most powerful gangs seized control of a key fuel terminal in the capital of Port-au-Prince, where some 10 million gallons of diesel and gasoline and more than 800,000...
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