Humanitarian crisis: Canada sanctions Haiti gang leader Chérizier

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Canada has sanctioned Haitian gang leader Jimmy Chérizier for human rights abuses responsible for the humanitarian crisis in the Caribbean nation.

The sanction against Cherizier, leader of the so-called G9, an alliance of Haitian gangs, effectively freezes any assets he may hold in Canada and imposes a travel ban and arms embargo.

Canada’s foreign ministry said in a statement that;

“Canada has reason to believe this individual has engaged in acts that threaten the peace, security, and stability of Haiti and has planned, directed, or committed acts that constitute serious human rights abuses.”

The sanctions, which implement a U.N. Security Council sanctions resolution and build on earlier actions imposed by the United States and Canada, aim to stop the illegal flow of money and weapons into Haiti that help criminal gangs, the ministry said.

“These gangs and their supporters terrorize vulnerable populations in Haiti with impunity, and are precipitating a humanitarian crisis in Haiti that includes the resurgence of cholera,” the foreign ministry said.

Also Read: Haiti gang blockade: UN to sanction perpetrators

The ministry added that the gangs are committing unspeakable violence, including widespread sexual violence, against affected populations and impeding the delivery of critical services.

Haiti’s gangs have expanded their power since the shocking 2021 assassination of President Jovenel Moise, and Prime Minister Ariel Henry has faced difficulties in restoring order to the country.

In September, gangs led by Cherizier blocked the entrance to the Varreux fuel terminal just outside the capital Port-au-Prince, to protest a government announcement to cut fuel subsidies.

Gasoline and diesel supplies have mostly dried up since then and Haitians also face a shortage of drinking water amid a deadly outbreak of cholera.


Zainab Sa’id

Source Reuters
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