Institute for Justice and Democracy in Haiti

As Cholera Surges, Cholera Elimination Funding Decreases

Though the cholera brought to Haiti by UN peacekeepers continues to kill, there are fewer and fewer cholera treatment centers and funding to fight cholera is running out. Right after the epidemic began in 2010, there was a lot of funding but the UN has struggled for years to fund its cholera elimination plan. Now, a UN spokesman has promised a new approach and “material assistance and support” for Haiti’s cholera victims. IJDH’s Beatrice Lindstrom says “If the U.N. does present a robust response that responds to victims’ rights, it would make further litigation unnecessary.” Cholera blamed on U.N. peacekeepers surges in Haiti as funding vanishes Makini Brice, Reuters September 9, 2016 U.N.-led foreign funding has dried up for Haiti’s fight against cholera, thought to have been introduced by Nepali peacekeepers, triggering a surge of deaths this year even as the global […]

Shortly After Admission of UN Involvement in Cholera, Court Dismisses Case

After nearly six years of denying responsibility for bringing cholera to Haiti, a spokesman for the United Nations conceded UN involvement. Shortly after that, a U.S. Appeals Court upheld the UN’s immunity from suit in a claim on behalf of the victims of the UN’s epidemic. The three judges who made the decision said that the appeal was “without merit,” despite the fact that the UN has not held its end of the treaty by providing the victims with access to justice. Lawyers for the victims, who have 90 days to decide whether to appeal to the Supreme Court, “will decide how to proceed based on whether the U.N.’s actions fulfill the cholera victims’ rights to an effective remedy.” —- U.S. judge upholds U.N. immunity in Haiti cholera case Anastasia Moloney, Thomson Reuters August 19, 2016 BOGOTA, Aug 19 (Thomson Reuters […]

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 […]

U.S. Official Acknowledges Need for Transitional Haiti Government

After weeks of pushing Haiti to go forward with elections that are widely seen as illegitimate, the U.S. government has finally acknowledged the need for a transitional period. In the interview below, Haiti Special Coordinator Kenneth Merten says that the U.S. opposes a long transitional period but know that a temporary solution is needed. What remains to be seen is whether the U.S. government will support a more democratic elections process going forward. Part of the article is below. Click HERE for the full text. Exclusive – Short-term interim government likely in Haiti – U.S. official Frank Jack Daniel, Reuters January 25, 2016 PORT-AU-PRINCE (Reuters) – Haiti is likely to install an interim government to transfer power to a new president, a senior U.S. official said on Monday, after the Caribbean nation called off an election days before current President Michel Martelly […]

Over 100 Parties Registered for Haiti Elections

Today, April 23, was the deadline for candidates to register for Haiti’s upcoming elections. With over 100 parties registered (a record number), the Council in charge of elections (the CEP) is worried about how to present the ballots. Fitting all these candidates would be a challenge for any country but in a country with a high rate of illiteracy, it’s especially tough to make sure all candidates are distinguishable and fairly represented. The CEP is encouraging parties to consolidate and international observers are hoping for the same. Haiti’s politicians scramble to register for overdue elections Peter Granitz, Reuters April 23, 2015 (Reuters) – Candidates from as many as 125 political parties in Haiti on Thursday rushed to meet a deadline to register to run in the country’s long-overdue elections later this year. The impoverished Caribbean island has a history of turbulent […]

As Cholera Spikes, Haiti’s Rainy Season Approaches

New cholera infections are increasing in Haiti as the United Nations continues to struggle to raise funds for an initiative it started in 2012. As the rainy season approaches, many fear that even the funds that were already requested by MINUSTAH ($36.5 million for the next 2 years) will not be enough to keep the infection rates from rising. Click HERE for the original article. Early Haiti rains bring risk of bleak cholera season Peter Granitz, Reuters April 17, 2015 PORT-AU-PRINCE, April 17 (Reuters) – Haitian officials are reporting a spike in cholera cases late last year and carrying over into the first three months of 2015 as an early start to the rainy season has public health workers worried. As of March 28, the Haitian Ministry of Health confirmed at least 11,721 cases of cholera, more than a 300 percent […]

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