Thank you SRSG La Lime for your briefing, and the pertinent recommendations in the report. We thank you and your team for your dedication and efforts in Haiti.
We would also like to thank Dr. Arnoux Descardes for your inputs and we welcome the presence of Haiti in the chamber.
Once again we must stress our deep concern for what Haiti and the Haitian people are going through. As the recent report mentions, almost every indicator shows a negative situation. Violence has affected the ability of Haitians to meet their basic needs.
Approximately 17,000 citizens have reportedly fled gang-affected areas, and there is evidence of recruitment of minors by armed gangs. The chronic kidnapping situation is also a worrying example drawing together exploitation, insecurity, and the disregard for human rights that is endemic in Haiti.
We are alarmed also by the reports of increasing use of sexual and gender-based violence against girls and women by gangs as a form of retaliation and punishment. It is vital that victims and survivors have safe access to comprehensive health services, legal services, and information.
We are also concerned that the national police SGBV data centre is no longer functional. The rule of law and the justice sector must be strengthened in order to end this cycle of impunity, and promote accountability for human rights violations and abuses. Additionally, as we head into hurricane season, we once again call for more focus on resilience-building. Particularly in the face of stronger, more frequent storms, and other natural disasters that affect Haiti.
Climate disasters take multidimensional forms, and impact the poorest, rural communities, the most. As people are forced to flee to cities, they are increasingly vulnerable to exploitation by gangs. The relationship is clear: there are climate elements that contribute to instability. We therefore believe this should be a stronger part of BINUH’s and the UN family’s work.
Norway remains committed to the UN’s presence in Haiti through BINUH, the country team, and agencies, funds, and programmes. And we look forward to actively engaging in the upcoming mandate renewal process as a strong partner of Haiti.
Norway will remain a development partner, and provide further support in areas such as climate resilience, food security, water and sanitation, and the empowerment of women.
In facing these challenges, we urge all political actors in Haiti to come together to find a joint way forward, and restore legitimately elected institutions. Political will must be found to forge reconciliation, and a path towards free, fair, and transparent elections. The only solution for Haiti is one created by Haitians themselves.