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Wednesday April 17 2024

New U.S. Ambassador to Haiti takes charge amid governance crisis and uncontrollable gang surge

2 April 2024 19:06 (UTC+04:00)
New U.S. Ambassador to Haiti takes charge amid governance crisis and uncontrollable gang surge

The newly appointed United States Ambassador to Haiti, Dennis Bruce Hankins, arrived in the country to commence his diplomatic responsibilities amid the country’s ongoing crisis, marked by the recent resignation of Prime Minister Ariel Henry, the impending transition to a nine-member Transitional Presidential Council, and the alarming grip of armed gangs in the capital, Azernews reports, citing haititimes.

New U.S. Ambassador to Haiti takes charge amid governance crisis and uncontrollable gang surge - The Haitian Times

“It is an honor to return to Haiti, a place I hold dear, as Ambassador. I understand that these are challenging times for the Haitian people. They deserve elected officials who are accountable to them,” Ambassador Hankins expressed in a U.S. Embassy release.

The role of U.S. Ambassador to Haiti had been vacant since 2021, following the departure of Michele Sison in October of that year. Appointed by President Joseph ‘Joe’ Biden to lead the American mission in Haiti, Ambassador Hankins brings a wealth of experience to his new role, having served in various countries since 1984, including Haiti.

Hankins begins his tenure in Haiti with no elected president, amidst escalating violence in the capital, Port-au-Prince, marked by highly coordinated gang attacks targeting residents, businesses, law enforcement, and state institutions. His arrival comes against a backdrop of a dysfunctional government as the country’s Prime Minister, Ariel Henry, has resigned while on a trip to negotiate the deployment of a Multinational Mission Support, to help the National Police combat gang.

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