Haitian Gangs Target Affluent Neighborhoods, Still No Sign Of Transitional Council.

Photo by Reynaldo Mirault on Unsplash Petionville is a leafy suburb of Port au Prince where more wealthy Haitians live.
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Gangs attacked affluent neighborhoods in Haiti early Monday, killing at least a dozen people, according to witnesses, reports VOA.

The upscale neighborhood of Petionville outside the capital, Port-au-Prince, was one of those attacked, and at least 12 bodies were found, according to residents and media.

Gunmen looted homes in the Laboule and Thomassin communities before sunrise, forcing residents to flee. Until now, both communities had been mainly peaceful amid the gang attacks in Port-au-Prince.

The attacks also targeted Haiti’s power company, which said Monday that four substations “were destroyed and rendered completely dysfunctional.” The attacks have left much of the capital without power.

According to The Associated Press, the recent attacks have led to concerns that gang violence would not subside in Haiti, even though Prime Minister Ariel Henry announced last week that he would resign once a transitional council was established. The gangs had demanded that Henry resign.

The establishment of a seven-member transitional council, which will work to replace Henry, has been experiencing significant delays as political parties disagree over who should sit on the council.

The issue has also delayed the deployment of a U.N.-backed police force from Kenya, which has said it will wait until the transitional council has been deployed before entering Haiti.

Worsening violence has led the United States and Canada to withdraw embassy staff. In recent days, fires were set to the national police chief’s residence and the main penitentiary, which gangs stormed, along with another prison, freeing thousands of inmates.

As the transitional council faces delays, and the national police force is overwhelmed by the gangs, a humanitarian crisis worsens daily in Haiti. The country is facing food and medical care shortages.

Approximately 1.4 million Haitians are on the brink of famine, and more than 4 million need food aid. The situation is exacerbated by the fact that not all aid is delivered to those who need it most.

UNICEF shipped a container of essential goods to Haiti but said Saturday that the goods were looted.

The U.S. hopes the transitional council will be ready “as soon as Monday,” said State Department spokesperson Vedant Patel.

Sources: VOA and news agencies.

 

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