Guyana joins with Caricom in condemning killing of cops in Haiti

The 15-member regional bloc – the Caribbean Community (Caricom), whose members include Guyana – has once again condemn the ongoing violence in Haiti particularly the killing of police officers.
In a statement on Saturday, Caricom said it is deeply concerned that the contrasting incidents involving the Haitian National Police indicate the severity of the challenges that the police face as well as further breakdown in security in Haiti.
“Caricom strongly condemns the killing of police officers and expresses its condolences to the families of the officers who lost their lives in the line of duty. The anger and dismay of the police at the gruesome killings of their colleagues …are shared by all. However, abandoning the role of the security forces to protect every citizen and maintain public order further destabilizes the country. The protest actions by members of the police service against the Prime Minister cannot be condoned,” the regional body stated.
Approximately 78 police officers have been killed since July 2021 and of this, 14 were in this month – January 2023.
Caricom, nevertheless, urges the members of the Haitian National Police to safeguard peace and order as well as to refrain from actions which could only serve to foster even greater damage to the country and its people.
The security situation in Haiti has deteriorated dramatically since the assassination of President Jovenel Moïse in July 2021, as rival gangs battle for dominance on the streets of Port-au-Prince. In fact, current Prime Minister, Ariel Henry, survived what is widely suspected to have been an assassination attempt last year.
CARICOM had been vocal in condemning the violence in its Member States and only last Tuesday, it sounded calls for a consensus from stakeholders in resolving the country’s crisis.
It recognised efforts being made by various groups of Haitian stakeholders to negotiate political accords since 2021 to contribute to resolving the protracted political stalemate. This includes the latest agreement that was made public by the Interim Prime Minister on 21 December 2022.
“Caricom urges all stakeholders to come together in their search for a consensus agreement. The Community remains willing and ready to assist in achieving this goal and in that regard had commenced sounding Haitian stakeholders over the past few weeks about their willingness to attend a meeting in a Caricom country,” the regional bloc said in a January 24 missive.
Back in December, former Caricom Chairman, Prime Minister of St Vincent and the Grenadines Ralph Gonsalves has warned the Region to tread carefully and limit itself to a “good offices” role in the Haiti’s current political controversy.
Gonsalves noted that Caricom must focus on a “good offices” role where it facilitates political dialogue and assists Haiti in preparing for elections.
Gonsalves pointed out that many Haitians do not recognise the present Haitian Government of Prime Minister Henry, who has requested security support from the United Nations, Canada and the United States of America and Caricom itself, to deal with the gang violence. (G8)