Haitian PM Flies To US As Kenyan Cops Start Port-au-Prince Beat.

Photo: US Department of State. Gary Conille will be meeting various US officials and no doubt discussin the financing of the peace keeping mission in Haiti.
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Haitian Prime Minister Garry Conille flew out of the besieged Caribbean nation yesterday, headed for Washington and New York City , just as squads of newly arrived  Kenyan cops began patrolling the city as part of the U.N.-backed mission to battle the numerous armed gangs that have overrun the capital for several months.

Conille’s office said he is traveling  with Foreign Minister Dominique Dupuy, Finance Minister Ketleen Florestal and Chief of Staff Nesmy Manigat, while Justice Minister Carlos Hercule is saying behind to man the fort in Haiti.

“The delegation will have important work meetings with officials from international financial institutions, among others. It will also inspect Haiti’s embassy in Washington,” the office said in a press release.

A spokesperson for the U.S. National Security Council said Deputy National Security Advisor Jon Finer would meet with Conille on Monday.

The United States is providing most of the money to finance a Kenya-led international security force the United Nations has ratified be sent to Haiti to help its police battle armed gangs that have plunged the country into social and economic crisis.

Haiti’s former government first requested the force in 2022, and a first deployment of Kenyan police arrived this week, although it has not been announced when the rest of the force — expected to number over 2,500 — will be getting boots on the ground.

As armed khaki-clad Kenyan police in bullet-proof jackets and helmets patrolled the city in black armored vans, Port-au-Prince residents said they hoped the force could stop the indiscriminate killings and allow business to restart.

“We need peace. If the Kenyan police forces are here, it’s so we can return to the lives we used to have. We hope they’ve come to work seriously,” said resident Kloud Dine.

“We need the Kenyans here a while because the gang members make us suffer too much,” added Louise Baret, a painter. “Enough is enough.”

In a video shared on social media on Wednesday, gang leader Jimmy “Barbecue” Cherizier rallied armed men, telling them to fire on Kenyan police and pledging to fight to the death: “I don’t care if they are white or black. If they’re not Haitian and they’re on Haitian soil, they’re invaders,” he said.

Over half a million people have fled their homes due to the violence, and around half the population is going hungry.

Sources: VOA, Reuters, CNN, BBC.
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