CARICOM Leaders Meet As Chaos Reigns In Haiti – St. Lucia Times

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Caribbean Community (CARICOM) leaders and international stakeholders were meeting in Jamaica on Monday to discuss Haiti’s deteriorating security and humanitarian crisis.

CARICOM Chairman, Guyana President Dr. Irfaan Ali, said the Haiti situation remains dire and is of serious concern.

Ali disclosed that CARICOM Heads of Government remain engaged in ‘deep discussion’ with the various stakeholders in Haiti and the country’s Prime Minister, Ariel Henry.

Armed groups in Haiti are attempting to force Henry’s resignation.

The Haitian Prime Minister has been stranded in Puerto Rico since last week, unable to return home as increasing violence has left Haitians struggling to secure food and water.

Henry has been in power since shortly after the assassination of President Jovenel Moïse in July 2021.

The United States backed him in a power-sharing agreement designed to bring new elections to Haiti as soon as possible, but election promises still need to be met.

Over the weekend, the United States flew a team of marines into Haiti as the security situation around the U.S. Embassy deteriorated, and nonessential embassy staff were airlifted out of the country.

“Whilst we are making considerable progress, the stakeholders are not yet where they need to be,” President Ali explained ahead of the CARICOM leaders’ meeting on the Haiti crisis.

“We are acutely aware of the urgent need for consensus,” the Guyana President said.

“We have impressed on the respective parties that time is not on their side in agreeing to the way forward,” Ali expressed.

He said CARICOM had decided to write to the heads of state and governments of key countries Haiti has engaged with as partners, inviting them to meet regional leaders at Monday’s Kingston, Jamaica event.

Ali said the purpose of the meeting was to address urgently the Haiti situation and all other matters critical to stabilising security and providing humanitarian aid.

He spoke of the need to communicate unity between CARICOM and the international community as they work together to provide critical support to the Haitian people.

“We would like the Haitian people to know that we will continue to work with them on their behalf until there is a satisfactory resolution that brings stability and relief to them,” the CARICOM Chairman stated.

Ali also noted that the people of Haiti must lead and own the resolution to their country’s situation.