PORT-AU-PRINCE, Haiti — An ex-police officer thought of by many to be Haiti’s strongest gang chief warned Wednesday that he would struggle any worldwide armed drive deployed to the Caribbean nation if it commited any abuses.
Jimmy Chérizier, greatest often called “Barbecue,” additionally urged Haitians to mobilize in opposition to the federal government. “We’re asking the inhabitants to stand up,” he mentioned at a information convention.
Prime Minister Ariel Henry, who has led Haiti for the reason that July 2021 assassination of President Jovenel Moïse, has been pushing for the deployment of a overseas armed drive since October to assist struggle highly effective gangs which can be estimated to now management 80% of the capital of Port-au-Prince.
In late July, the African nation of Kenya supplied to steer a multinational drive, and the U.S. mentioned earlier this month that it might put ahead a decision within the U.N. Safety Council to authorize a non-U.N. multinational mission.
Chérizier mentioned he would welcome a overseas drive if it had been to arrest the prime minister and other people he described as corrupt politicians and native police allegedly promoting ammunitions and weapons in Haiti’s slums.
“If the overseas drive comes to assist and supply safety for all times to start out over once more, we may even applaud,” he mentioned.
However he mentioned Haitians would stand up if any worldwide drive repeated the actions of earlier U.N. peacekeepers, together with committing sexual abuses and inadvertently introducing cholera into water sources.
“We are going to struggle in opposition to them till our final breath,” he mentioned. “Will probably be a struggle of the Haitian individuals to avoid wasting the dignity of our nation.”
The United Nations had no remark, U.N. spokesman Stephane Dujarric mentioned.
Chérizier, who has been accused by authorities of masterminding a number of massacres in recent times and of organizing a gas blockade final yr that paralyzed Haiti for practically two months, mentioned the group he leads, G9 Household and Allies, is not warring with one other group often called G-Pep.
“We turned one,” he mentioned. “We love life rather a lot.”
Chérizier is the one Haitian below U.N. sanctions, with the Safety Council saying he “has engaged in acts that threaten the peace, safety, and stability of Haiti and has deliberate, directed, or dedicated acts that represent severe human rights abuses.”
He referred to as on the Ministry of Schooling to reopen faculties in Cite Soleil and different slums which have been closed as a result of warring gangs who’re raping and killing individuals. The violence has displaced practically 200,000 Haitians whose houses have been torched by the gangs.
Chérizier spoke to just about two dozen journalists at an open air building website in Port-au-Prince. He wore sandals, white pants and an orange hoodie emblazoned with a non secular image utilized in Vodou.
He was surrounded by a number of G9 members carrying small handguns seen below their garments, not like his earlier media appearances at which they freely held assault rifles.