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UNICEF condemns the tragic assault on a Haitian family on Christmas Day.
Americas World News

UNICEF condemns the tragic assault on a Haitian family on Christmas Day.

The incident in the Croix de Bouquet district resulted in the deaths of four individuals, including two girls under the age of 10.

Four additional members of the family were abducted.

There has been an unprecedented rise in criminal activity.

Last Tuesday, Bruno Maes, the UNICEF Representative in Haiti, stated that there were previous attacks in the same neighborhood a week prior.

Unfortunately, these killings are not happening in isolation,” he stated. “Just in the months of July to September 2023, Haiti has seen 88 serious violations of children’s rights, with 37 of them resulting in deaths or injuries during armed conflicts.”

The Caribbean country is still being plagued by rampant gang violence, primarily in the capital city. This issue is affecting nearly half of the population, approximately five million people, and they are in need of humanitarian aid.

According to Mr. Maes, there has been a significant increase in major crimes such as homicides and kidnappings, especially in the Port-au-Prince metropolitan area and the Artibonite department.

In the months of July to September, the Haitian National Police reported an alarming 1,239 cases of murder, which is more than double the 577 cases in the same time frame in 2022. The number of abductions also skyrocketed to 701 victims, an astonishing increase of 244 percent.

In addition, regions under the control of armed factions have experienced assaults on important locations like schools, healthcare facilities, and protective services.

Protect civilians, respect humanitarian law

UNICEF and partners have repeatedly called for the protection of civilians, in particular children and women, and for the respect of international humanitarian law.

Mr. Maes stated that taking the life of children is a serious infringement of their human rights.

He stated that the continuous assaults and limitations on access due to the unstable and dangerous situation are hindering the ability to aid those in need.

He underlined UNICEF’s commitment “to take all measures to ensure the safety of children and their families and to reduce the suffering of the victims.”