Addressing the UN on Tuesday, President Joe Biden called on the Security Council (UNSC) to authorize sending a military force into Haiti to restore order. The White House has wanted the UN to take action in the Caribbean nation for a year but has struggled to find a country willing to lead the UN mission in Haiti.
Speaking at the General Assembly in New York, Biden called on the UNSC to pass a resolution allowing Kenya to send troops to Haiti. “On Haiti, the Caribbean communities facilitated a dialogue among Haitian society. I thank President Ruto of Kenya – I thank him for his willingness to serve as a lead nation of a UN-backed security support mission,” he said. “I call on the Security Council to authorize this mission now. The people of Haiti cannot wait much longer.”
Initially, the White House hoped to enlist Canada to lead the mission, but Ottowa refused to bend to Washington’s pressure. Biden believes the UNSC needs to restore order in Haiti because gangs have taken control over parts of the country.
Port-au-Prince’s descent into violence and gang control accelerated after the assassination of President Jovenal Moise in July 2021. No one has been brought to justice for the murder, but the current president, Ariel Henry, has been implicated as a potential member of the plot against Mosie.
Henry rose to power with Washington’s backing and has been a leading voice calling for an outside force to aid Port-au-Prince in reestablishing control. However, UN Peacekeepers have a disgraceful track record filled with human rights abuses. In 2010, a cholera outbreak that killed around 10,000 Haitians was traced to sewage released by peacekeepers.