Institute for Justice and Democracy in Haiti

A New UN: Independent Tribunal as a Solution to Immunity Abuse

With the issue of widespread peacekeeper sexual abuse arising amidst cases such as cholera in Haiti, the United Nations must take steps to stop the misuse of its immunity.  In this opinion piece, Danny Bradlow explores the establishment of an independent tribunal within the UN as a potential solution to the general lack of accountability. He maintains the necessity of an independent justice mechanism, putting it into the context of the upcoming 2017 appointment of the new Secretary General. Part of the article is below. Click HERE for the full article. ….. What can be done to stop the United Nations abusing its immunity Danny Bradlow, The Conversation June 26, 2016 The passage of time can play cruel tricks on noble intentions. The person selected as the new United Nations (UN) Secretary-General later this year should keep this in mind as he or she evaluates how effectively […]

Steady Progress Against Sexual Violence in Haiti

Below is a brief report from one of our partners in Haiti, KOFAVIV, on the current women’s rights situation. The report describes the decrease in rapes since the 2010 earthquake and the need for continued work on the justice system so that more perpetrators are prosecuted. Making Progress in the Fight Against Gender-based Violence Malya Villard Appolon May 2016 On behalf of KOFAVIV, the Commission of Women Victims helping women Victims, I extend our appreciation to everyone who has helped to provide services to women and girls who have been victims of sexual violence in Haiti. The 2010 earthquake led to significant increase in insecurity and impoverishment in a country already coping with economic hardship and instability. The natural disaster impacted negatively the nation as a whole, where everyone was grieving over the loss of a loved one, their homes, […]

7 Important Questions for the Next UN Secretary General

For the first time, the United Nations is trying to make the process of choosing a new Secretary General more transparent by welcoming public questioning of the candidates. This article lists some crucial questions for the candidates to think about regarding UN accountability for sexual abuse and the Haitian cholera epidemic brought by peacekeepers, climate change, having the first-ever female Secretary General, and more. Part of the article is below. Click HERE for the full text. 7 questions we want the candidates for U.N. secretary-general to answer Tom Murphy and Lisa Nikolau, Humanosphere April 15, 2016 Yesterday wrapped up the first-ever public questioning of the candidates vying for the post as the next head of the United Nations. The once completely opaque process is changing thanks to public campaigns and pressure from member countries. Declared candidates fielded questions from members of […]

Can the Next Secretary-General Improve UN Accountability?

Although the United Nations does much commendable work around the world, it has increasingly come under fire for its lack of accountability, particularly in cases of sexual abuse and the cholera epidemic it brought to Haiti. Many are wondering how the next Secretary-General, who will be chosen this year, can begin to address these issues. Some of the ideas and suggestions are discussed in this article. Part of the article is below. Click HERE for the full text. Can a new boss fix the U.N.? Mark Porubansky, MinnPost April 13, 2016 It’s hard to imagine the world getting even as far as it has in tackling climate change without the United Nations pushing governments to reduce emissions. Or the Iran-nuclear deal, as imperfect as it is, having taken shape without the U.N. imposing sanctions on Iran or its teams of inspectors […]

Head of Senate Foreign Relations Committee Calls Ban Ki-moon Inept

Wednesday, the Senate Foreign Relations Committee had a hearing on United Nations accountability, particularly regarding sexual abuse by peacekeepers. Senator Bob Corker, the chair of the Committee made a strong statement  on the issue and even called UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon inept, as it took the UN so long to start responding to sexual abuse allegations. For example, the UN General Assembly has only just begun to implement recommendations in a report on this issue that was published in 2005! U.N. chief ‘inept’ on peacekeeper sex abuse: key U.S. senator Louis Charbonneau, Reuters April 13, 2016 An influential U.S. senator accused United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon of ineptitude on Wednesday for failing to halt sexual exploitation and abuse by blue-helmeted peacekeepers. The criticism from Senator Bob Corker, a Republican who chairs the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, comes as candidates to […]

UN impunity for sexual abuse in CAR is indicative of a larger problem

For a few years, allegations of sexual abuse by United Nations peacekeepers around the world have been surfacing. One country where the problem has seemed particularly rampant is the Central African Republic (CAR), particularly as allegations have continually surfaced for the past year. This article discusses one of the most recent cases, in which a peacekeeper tied four girls up and forced them to have sex with a dog. Women and girls from CAR have endured many such gruesome scenarios at the hands of the peacekeepers who are meant to protect them and it is only after a whole year of accusations that the United Nations has begun to take action. Part of the article is below. Click HERE for the full text. The UN’s Good vs. Bad Narrative Clears the Way for Sexual Violence and Impunity Maya Goodfellow, Media […]

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