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2024-03-18T190940Z_33785152_RC2DO6A6124G_RTRMADP_3_HAITI-VIOLENCE header.JPG
World News

‘Death begets more death’: Haitian bishops condemn ongoing violence as country awaits transitional council

by Heather Preston

Catholic bishops in Haiti have called for an end to “all acts aimed at reducing Haiti to rubble and ashes,” as violence and chaos continues to take hold of the Caribbean country.

A security and humanitarian crisis there has reached a critical point in recent weeks after armed gangs attacked government buildings in the capital city of Port-au-Price, forcing Prime Minister Ariel Henry to resign. On Monday, rebels attacked two neighbourhoods in the capital, leaving at least a dozen people dead. Attacks on power stations have also left much of Port-au-Prince without power, affecting hospitals and other vital buildings.

Haitian bishops have expressed their “deep concern” for the Haitian people, calling for an end to the violence:

“We invite all Haitians, without distinction, to refrain from fuelling violence, because violence begets violence, hatred begets more hatred and death begets more death.”

Gangs have long opposed Mr Henry, arguing the people did not elect him while others accuse gangs of trying to seize power for themselves. Caribbean leaders are assisting in the creation of a transitional presidential council.

“We encourage the efforts of all sectors and forces of the Nation to find a solution to the current crisis and restore peace and security for all… by providing the country with a form of inclusive transitional government,” the Haitian bishops said in a statement.

The Haitian Catholic Bishops’ Conference has said it is in line with Pope Francis’ recent call for peace and reconciliation.

The statement was signed by Archbishop Max Leroy Mesidor of Port-au-Prince, president of the Episcopal Conference of Haiti (CEH) and nine other bishops.


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