Defenders Plus calls for the umpteenth time for the responsibility of judicial and governmental authorities in the face of criminal insecurity

In recent years, control of the national territory has increasingly escaped the Haitian state. Gangs in addition to spreading terror, also initiate conflicts in the places they control by serving as judges and executioners. Mistrust in state institutions hovers in some working-class neighborhoods, pushing some people to turn to gangs to resolve their conflicts. Defenseurs Plus calls for the responsibility of state authorities in the face of criminal insecurity in order to free neighborhoods under the influence of armed gangs.

Armed gangs reign supreme in several municipalities of the country and completely control the metropolitan area. A strong presence of armed groups in several provincial towns is growing under the absolute passivity of the authorities. Armed individuals loot, rape and kill with impunity. The situation has become more complicated since the government’s decision to increase the prices of petroleum products on September 12. State institutions are working in slow motion, giving carte blanche to the population to act outside the law.

Insecurity really spares no one. From ordinary citizens to political figures, they are also plagued by insecurity. Added to the long list of victims of insecurity in the country are Yvon BUISSERETH and Eric JEAN BAPTISTE, his bodyguard Peterson Vernius, who were murdered in Laboule 12, respectively on August 6 and October 28, 2022. At the same time, the Collectif Défenseurs Plus observes a continuity of kidnapping cases during the last two (2) weeks in different neighborhoods of Port-au-Prince. We can cite the case of the former Minister of Planning and External Cooperation, current member of the executive board of the Fanmi Lavalas party, Anthony DESSOURCES, kidnapped on October 29 in Puits-Blain, Delmas 75, and released six ( 6) days later.

One of the basic functions of any State is to ensure the security of its citizens and the integrity of its territory. Moreover, the Universal Declaration of Human Rights reaffirmed the right to security in its article 3 by stipulating that everyone has the right to life, liberty and security of person. This is repeated in the Haitian Constitution of 1987 in its article 19: “The right to security must be guaranteed to all citizens”.

Moreover, the police institution is powerless against gangs, and fails to establish a climate of security in the country, which would not be conducive to the return to school which is still pending. The Haitian Government has admitted its inability to ensure the safety of goods and people in Haiti, calling for assistance from the international community to resolve the security and humanitarian crisis. Thus, the Defenseurs Plus Collective calls on all actors in society to join together to eradicate this endemic crisis in the country which threatens the security of all.

Done in Port-au-Prince, November 7, 2022

Chaïna Etienne
Program Director
Tel: 509 38 92 7055

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