Term Paper: Haiti and UN Peacekeeping Missions

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Haiti and UN peacekeeping Missions

The latest era of the UN presence in Haiti started during September 1991 at the time when President Aristide's democratically elected administration was ousted a military government under the leadership of General Raoul Cedras and compelled to flee. The reaction of the international community was quick and started a three-year process of sanctions and negotiations with the military government prior to President Aristide's ultimate return to power during 1994. The reaction of the Organization of the American States -- OAS and the Caribbean Community -- CARICOM was particularly strong, prompted by the OAS's fresh dedication to the strengthening of the representative democracy in the region and the important contribution of the two organizations in easing and supervising the election in which Aristide had emerged triumphant. The OAS quickly put an embargo on all aid in favor of Haiti save for humanitarian assistance. However, following several days when the OAS entrustment parleying with the military government was given orders to depart from the nation, the organization asked the members to put a trade embargo. (Kumar, Chetan; Reinner, 12)

In the meantime, a severe onslaught on the political opposition by the military administration triggered a mass evacuation from Haiti to the U.S. UN Secretary General, Boutros Ghali during the autumn of 1992, gave orders for a joint OAS/UN mission to Haiti to start negotiation with the government. An OAS special envoy for Haiti, Dante Caputo was appointed thereafter. General Cedras and the Prime Minister of Haiti, Marc Bazin stated that they desired to cooperate. Giving a memorandum to Caputo during January 1993, they accepted a proposal to start a joint OAS/UN civilian mission in order to monitor human rights. Delving a little deeper into history, it reveals that the most vital matter to comprehend regarding present Haiti is that it is the sole country in history that have been founded by slaves who defeated their masters. This distinctive aspect of the history of Haiti is regarded as an asset as also a liability. Because of the delight in their momentous triumph permits Haitians to regard them as a single nation, regardless of the deep social gap that separates the top from the bottom, this same delight also builds an inward concentration that checks a lot of Haitians from learning from others. Majority of the officials from the international arena those who have dealt with Haiti will definitely remember the trying occasion in which they started to recommend solutions for Haiti's concerns on the basis of experience of other developing nations, they were told again that their recommendations were motivating from the intellectual standpoint, however it was not applicable as Haiti was a something different. (Kumar, Chetan; Reinner, 12)

During July, 1994, the Security Council ordered the positioning of a multinational force of 20,000 to help in quick return of the rightful Haitian administration, upkeep a safe and stable government in the nation and foster the statute of law. After the multinational force, a number of subsequent UN peacekeeping missions continued from 1994 to 2001, inclusive of UN Support Mission in Haiti -- UNIMIH that started its complete functioning in March 1995, the UN Support Mission in Haiti -- UNSMIH and the UN Civilian Mission in Haiti -- MIPONUH. Taking action on the recommendations of the Secretary-General, the Security Council approved resolution 1542 dated 30th April 2004, instituting MINUSTAH for a first six-month period, and called for that the power be shifted from the MIF to MINUSTAH on 1.6.2004. Starting on the state of affairs in Haiti on 18.11.2004 few days before ending of the 30.11.2004 of the mandate of MINUSTAH, the Secretary General explained the development made in the Mission's positioning since its beginning on 30 April. Because of the approaching of deadline for the forthcoming elections due to be held in Feb 2006, it was recommended by the Secretary-General that the Council extend the Mission's mandate for an additional period of 18 months, until 31 May 2006, with certain alterations within the framework of the general structure. (Haiti - MINUSTAH - Background)

The Secretary General made proposals for adjustments which are as follows: putting up more formed police unit of 125 officers for a short-term period for positioning in Port-au-Prince, in order to give more support to the Haitian National Police, and to reinforce security systems in the capital; executing, past the Mission's first year, rapidly influencing projects of humanitarian type, improving MINUSTAH's ability to formulate disarmament, demobilization and reintegration --DDR projects in the community, and reinforcing MINUSTAH's potential to monitor and evaluate the legal and institutional perspective for DDR, inclusive of small arms control and added sector-associated laws; putting one extra engineering company to the Mission's military component, with the work of doing repairs for roads and bridges used by Mission staff at the time of implementation of their mandate: and reinforcing humbly the humanitarian and development management strengths of MINUSTAH in the wake of Haiti's susceptibility to natural disasters. (Haiti - MINUSTAH - Background)

After understanding that the state of affairs in Haiti persisted in posing a danger to global peace and safety in the area and as per provisions contained in Chapter VII of the UN Charter, the Security Council by its resolution 1542 of 30th April 2004, took a decision to set up the UN Stabilization Mission in Haiti -- MINUSTAH and appealed that the authority be shifted from the Multinational Interim Force -- MIF, sanctioned by the Security Council during February 2004, to MINUSTAH on June 2004. (Haiti-MINUSTAH-Mandate)

The mission was set up with the mandate as follows: (i) secure & stable environment: (a) with the assistance of the Transitional Government, to guarantee a safe and established atmosphere in which the constitutional and political process in Haiti can happen. (b) to help the Transitional Government in supervising, streamlining and modifying the Haitian National Police, in keeping with the democratic policing criteria, inclusive of selection and authorizing of its staff, counseling as regards on its redeployment and training, inclusive of gender training, as also monitoring / mentoring members of the Haitian National Police. - to support the Transitional Government, especially the National Police of Haiti, with all-round and sustainable Disarmament, Demobilization and Reintegration -- DDR programs meant for all armed groups, inclusive of women and children linked with such groups, as also weapons control and public security initiatives; (d) to help in the restitution and upkeep of the rule of the law, security of common people and public order in Haiti through the provision among other things of functional support to the Haitian National Police and the Haitian Coast Guard, as also with their institutional reinforcement, inclusive of the reestablishment of the corrections system; (e) to safeguard UN staff, units, machineries and devices and to guarantee the security and sovereignty of movement of its personnel, considering the main responsibility of the Transitional Government in that aspect. (f) to safeguard civilians under possible threat of physical violence, inside its potential and regions of installation, without unfairness to the responsibilities of the Transitional Government and of police administration. (Haiti-MINUSTAH-Mandate) ii) Political Process: (a) to assist in the constitutional and political process which is continuing in Haiti, including by means of good offices, and promote values and democratic rule and development of institutions; (b) to help the Transitional Government in its endeavor to usher in a process of discussion at the national forum and reconciliation; - the help the Transitional Government in its endeavor to manage, evaluate, and undertake free and fair municipal, parliamentary and election to the office of the President as soon as possible, especially by means of provision of technical, logistical, and administrative assistance and long-term security, with right support to an electoral process with participation of voters which is representative of the national demographics, inclusive of women; (d) to help out the Transitional Government in extending State authority across Haiti and assist in good governance at the regional levels. (Haiti-MINUSTAH-Mandate) iii) Human Rights: (a) to help the Transitional Government as also Haitian human rights institutions and groups in their endeavor to foster and safeguard human rights, especially of women and children, so as to guarantee personal responsibility for violation of human rights and seek remedy for the sufferers; (b) to evaluate and report on the situation of human rights, in assistance with the Office of the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, covering as regards the condition of returned refugees and displaced individuals. Besides the Council also appealed that MINUSTAH take steps for cooperation and coordination with the Organization of American States -- OAS and the Caribbean Community -- CARICOM in implementing its mandate. (Haiti-MINUSTAH-Mandate)

The Security Council in its 15 Oct 2007 resolution extended the MINUSTAH through the middle part of October 2008 while minimizing its military constituent and augmenting police so as to adapt to the changing situation in the nation, in which civil unrest continues to be a threat, nevertheless gang violence has been significantly been lowered. Through the collectively adopted resolution, the Council placed recommendations made by… [END OF PREVIEW]

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