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U.S. envoy to Haiti resigns

Context:

The U.S. special envoy to Haiti resigned in protest in a letter that blasted the Biden administration for deporting hundreds of migrants back to the crisis-engulfed Caribbean nation from a camp on the U.S.-Mexican border in recent days.

Relevance:

Prelims, GS-II: International Relations (Important Political developments in foreign countries), Maps

Dimensions of the Article:

  1. Current Issue in Haiti
  2. About Haiti

Current Issue in Haiti

  • Haiti’s latest instability revolves around a dispute over Jovenel Moise’s presidency. He was elected in 2016 to a five-year term, but because of contention over election results, he did not take office until the next year.
  • Under Jovenel Moise’s administration, the political and economic situation in Haiti further deteriorated.
  • Jovenel Moise insisted that it entitled him to another year in power — a claim that Haiti’s opposition rejected.
  • In February 2021, when Moïse’s opponents said his term ended, they declared their Supreme Court Judge as interim president. Jovenel Moise called it a coup attempt, and 23 opponents were arrested.
  • At the same time there has been a surge in kidnappings, rapes and killings as rival gangs battle each other and the police for control of Haiti’s streets.
  • The human rights activists have accused Jovenel Moise’s government of having ties to the gangs.
  • So far this year, at least 278 Haitians have been killed in gang-related violence.
  • The unprecedented level of violence and subsequent displacements is creating a host of secondary issues.

About Haiti

  • Haiti is a country in the Caribbean Sea that includes the western third of the island of Hispaniola and such smaller islands as Gonâve, Tortue (Tortuga), Grande Caye, and Vache.
  • It occupies the western three-eighths of the Hispaniola island (in the Greater Antilles archipelago of the Caribbean Sea) which it shares with the Dominican Republic.
  • It lies to the east of Cuba and Jamaica and south of The Bahamas and the Turks and Caicos Islands. The capital is Port-au-Prince.
  • Its population is almost entirely descended from African slaves, won independence from France in 1804, making it the second country in the Americas, after the United States, to free itself from colonial rule.
  • The island was originally inhabited by the indigenous Taíno people, who originated in South America It is the world’s first independent Black-led republic.
  • The nation underwent about two centuries of Spanish colonial rule and more than a century of French rule.
  • Over the centuries, however, economic, political, and social difficulties as well as a number of natural disasters have beset Haiti with chronic poverty and other serious problems.
  • It is the Western Hemisphere’s poorest country, has a painful history of foreign interventions, economic exploitation and dictatorial rule.

-Source: The Hindu

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June 2022
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