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Brief overview of the United Nations Stabilization Mission in Haiti

Brief overview of the United Nations Stabilization Mission in Haiti



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MINUSTAH MINUSTAH Presentation Transcript

  • Development in Haiti
    Profile of the United Nations Stabilization Mission in Haiti (MINUSTAH)
    FREN/INTD 3125.03
    Student B00523047
  • Overview
    Historical Context
    Early UN Involvement
    Formation of MINUSTAH
    MINUSTAH Facts and Figures
    Earthquake of 2010
    Controversy and Criticism
  • Historical context
    • 1991: Military and police coup takes control of Haiti, overthrowing democratically elected leader, Jean-Bertrand Aristide.
    • 1994: UN Security Council authorizes the deployment of a twenty-thousand person multinational force to restore Aristide to power.
    • Though Aristide is again at the head of the country, the democratic system is not genuine, overrun by human rights abuses, corruption, and economic stagnation.
    • 2004: Armed conflict breaks out between opposition groups and supporters of Aristide, resulting in the rebels gaining control of northern Haiti.
    • On February 25th, US President George W. Bush notifies Congress that he has deployed a security force of over 55 US military personnel to Haiti to augment the embassy’s security forces. Limited effectiveness of Haitian national police due to spreading armed rebellion.
    • Just days later, Aristide resigns and flees to the Central African Republic.
  • Early UN Involvement
    February 29, 2004
    • That same day, Haiti’s representative to the United Nations requested UN assistance to the country, including assistance from foreign forces, on behalf of the new acting president, Boniface Alexandre.
    • UN Security Council adopted Resolution 1529, authorizing the deployment of a “multinational interim force” to the country for no more than three months, with the goal of stabilizing the situation.
    March 2, 2004
    • Bush informed Congress that he had deployed an additional 200 US combat-equipped military personnel from the US Joint Forces Command “for purposes consistent with United Nations Security Council Resolution 1529,” and that he anticipated the deployment of more personnel, as part of the Multinational Interim Force.
    • US continued to lead the deployment of the MIF, consisting of more than three thousand troops from Canada, Chile, France, and the US.
  • Formation of MINUSTAH
    • At the end of the three-month period initially decreed, the UN secretary-general issued a report on the situation and conditions in Haiti, outlining the necessary steps to creating a stable environment.
    • An additional recommendation was made to establish a multinational stabilization operation in Haiti. It would address a broad range of complex issues, such as the state of democracy in Haiti, as well as economic and social issues. This was to be called the United Nations Stabilization Mission in Haiti, also known as MINUSTAH (Mission des Nations Unies pour la stabilisation en Haïti).
    • April 30, 2004: UN Security Council unanimously adopted Resolution 1542, authorizing the creation of MINUSTAH.
    • June 1, 2004: MINUSTAH forces begin arriving in Haiti to replace the MIF. The mission is made up of forces from Argentina, Benin, Bolivia, Canada, Chile, Croatia, France, Guatemala, Nepal, Paraguay, Peru, Rwanda, and the United States.
  • MINUSTAH Facts and Figures
    Current strength:
    • 11, 848 uniformed personnel
    • 8,766 troops
    • 3,082 police
    • 481 international civilian personnel
    • 1,235 local civilian staff
    • 204 United Nations Volunteers
    159 total
    • 63 military personnel
    • 27 police
    • 40 international civilian personnel
    • 24 local civilian personnel
    Current authorized strength:
    • Up to 8,940 military personnel
    • Up to 4,391 police
    from http://www.un.org/en/peacekeeping/missions/minustah/facts.shtml
  • Earthquake of 2010
    • MINUSTAH had extended its mission for one final year in 2009, setting October 15, 2010 as a deadline, however, the effects of the devastating earthquake on January 12 imparted massive setbacks to the mission.
    • The mission headquarters in Port-au-Prince collapsed, and several other facilities severely damaged. Almost a hundred peacekeepers were confirmed dead, including Mission Chief Hédi Annabi, his deputy Luis Carlos da Costa, and acting police commissioner, Doug Coates. The UN describes these as the greatest loss for any single event in UN peacekeeping history.
    • Overall force levels were increased in order to facilitate immediate recovery, reconstruction, and stability efforts, decreed by resolutions 1908 and 1927. It was recommended that MINUSTAH forces remain acting in Haiti for the foreseeable future.
    • In October 2010, 9 months after the earthquake, the mission was officially extended.
  • Controversy and Criticism
    • July 2005: MINUSTAH carried out a raid against illegally armed rebels in an extremely impoverished area of Port-au-Prince. Accusations arose that this was an attempt targeting civilians to destroy the popular support for exiled Aristide before the upcoming elections.
    • June 2009: UN soldiers allegedly opened gunfire and attempted to arrest a mourner at the public procession and funeral of Catholic priest Father Gerard Jean-Juste, an event linked to Haiti’s largest political party, FanmiLavalas. The UN denies the shooting and being responsible for the mourner’s death, but eyewitnesses claim that this is a cover-up story.
    • 2005-present: Activist Jimmy Charles was arrested by UN troops in 2005 before being handed over to the Haitian police. A few days later, his body was found in the morgue, filled with bullet holes. A trial is currently in progress at the Inter-American Court of Human rights, regarding the matter concerning the State of Haiti, but the complaint against the Brazilian peacekeepers was rejected, demonstrating a bias.
    • 2010: A UN base was allegedly the source of an outbreak of Cholera that killed over 300 people.
  • Bibliography
    “Replacement of U.S.-Led Force in Haiti with UN Peacekeeping Mission.” The American Journal of International Law. 98. (2004): 586-588.
    U.N. Economic Commission for Latin America and the Caribbean. HAITI: SHORT AND LONG-TERM DEVELOPMENT ISSUES (LC/MEX/L.683). 18 October 2005.
    Peace and Security Section of the Department of Public Information. “MINUSTAH – United Nations Stabilization Mission in Haiti.” UNITED NATIONS. http://www.un.org/en/peacekeeping/missions/minustah/ (31 October 2010).