By Antony J. Blinken
News Americas, WASHINGTON, D.C., Weds. Oct. 12, 2022: As Haiti faces a deadly resurgence of cholera, malign actors continue to fund and foment violence, as well as block the supply of fuel and humanitarian access for life-saving assistance. Today, we are announcing new measures to provide the needed support to the people of Haiti and to hold those who continue to foment violence accountable.
Right now, our staff are on the ground in Haiti, working alongside Haitian health workers and NGOs to respond to the cholera outbreak and deliver care to those who need it. We will accelerate the delivery of additional humanitarian relief to the people of Haiti.
We are also working to increase and deploy in the coming days security assistance to the Haitian National Police to strengthen their capacity to counter gangs and re-establish a stable security environment under the rule of law.
We are also announcing a new visa restriction policy under section 212(a)(3)(C) of the Immigration and Nationality Act against Haitian officials and other individuals involved in the operation of street gangs and other Haitian criminal organizations that have threatened the livelihoods of the Haitian people and are blocking life-saving humanitarian support. Such actions may also apply to these individuals’ immediate family members.
At this time, the Department is identifying an initial group of individuals and their immediate family members who may be subject to visa restrictions under this policy. Our intent in imposing these visa restrictions is to demonstrate that there are consequences for those instigating violence and unrest in the country, while we continue to support the citizens, organizations, and public servants in Haiti who are committed to generating hope and opportunity for a better future in their nation.
Building on UN Security Council resolution 2645, we have drafted with our close partner and co-penholder Mexico a resolution proposing specific sanctions measures to enable the international community to address the many challenges facing the people of Haiti. We introduced this resolution last week and are negotiating with other UN Security Council members ahead of a vote.
With these actions and others, we will lay out in the days and weeks ahead, we are sending a clear message that the United States will continue to support the Haitian people during this critical time.
EDITOR’S NOTE: Antony J. Blinken is the US’ Secretary of State