We at Beyond Borders are heartbroken and enraged for what we are witnessing today in Haiti, more specifically in and around the capital of Port au Prince over the past few weeks and days.
Armed and vicious gangs are fighting for control over several neighborhoods, leaving people homeless, injured, traumatized, and dead.
The recent kidnappings of more than a dozen Haitian Catholic clergy and of leaders in a protestant church (taken in the middle of a worship service), and the unthinkable assault on an orphanage earlier this week, during which children and staff were beaten, sexually assaulted and raped is utterly unacceptable. These despicable acts are against article 3 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights stating “everyone has the right to life, liberty, and security of person.”
Beyond Borders vehemently condemns the escalating violence in Haiti and the impunity with which these gangs are operating.
We join our voice to echo the calls from all sectors of Haitian society, demanding the government protect human life and the fundamental human rights of all Haitians. We urge the Haitian government to take serious action to address the crisis and protect the people they have been elected to serve. We urge the international community to commit to protecting human rights and dignity in Haiti.
We stand in solidarity with the thousands of women and men who have taken to the streets in Port au Prince and are raising their voices to end this wave of criminalization and hold perpetrators to account.
This violence must stop, now.
We continue to work with our colleagues, partners, and program participants with safety and security at the forefront of all that we do. Our work to promote and defend the rights of children, and to end violence against women and girls is more critical than ever in times like these.