The UN warned that Haiti needs help from an international force in its fight against gangs

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UN envoy to Haiti Helen La Lime said she still believes the Caribbean country's request will be honored

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The UN warned that Haiti needs help from an international force in its fight against gangs

So far, the expectation among the international community has been that the United States or Canada can lead this operation, but none of them has shown any willingness (REUTERS/Ralph Tedy Erol)

The UN envoy for Haiti< /b>, Helen La Lime, assured this Wednesday that he continues to trust that the international community agrees to send an armed force to the Caribbean country to help fight the gangs, as requested by the Haitian government last October.

That operation has not materialized so far due to the lack of countries willing to lead it, according to several diplomatic sources, but La Lime stressed that the talks continue and that he hopes there could be one< b> decision soon.

The head of the United Nations pointed out that right now the ball is on the side of the Security Council, which on Tuesday analyzed the situation in Haiti and whose members met in New York, despite the fact that it will not be an operation under the flag of the UN.

“There is a recognition that it is time to sit down and deal with this question of force. My hope is that the Security Council will do that now, ”she explained at a press conference.

So far, the expectation among the international community has been that the United States or Canada could lead this operation, but neither has shown willingness to do so despite having promoted conversations about this initiative and to already be collaborating with the Haitian authorities on security matters.

The UN has warned that Haiti needs help from an international force in its fight against gangs

A boy on the floor of a school where people gather sheltered after gangs burned their homes (REUTERS/Ricardo Arduengo)

La Lime, when asked about it, said that at the moment it has not heard a “definite no” from the US and Canada and pointed out that there are other countries that have shown interest in participating in the operation.

“Now it is up to the members of the Security Council to have a discussion (…) and decide what is possible,” he insisted.

The senior official highlighted factors that are very positive the creation of a framework of sanctionsby the UN and the punishments imposed on certain figures by Canada and the United States, as well as the agreement reached last December in Haiti to carry out a transition process and general elections.

Faced with the security crisis in the country, last October the Haitian government officially requested the intervention of an international mission to help the National Police against the gangs, that dominate parts of Port-au-Prince and have committed thousands of murders and kidnappings in the last year.

This operation was backed by the United Nations Secretary General, António Guterres, who proposed establishing a “rapid action force” made up of soldiers or police from one or several countries and not under the UN flag.

La Lime stressed today that this intervention in support of the National Police continues to be necessary and urgent and ruled out a new Consider the possibility that it be carried out by the United Nations, since the Haitians do not want it to be so.

(With information from EFE)

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