United States Announces $100M in Funding for International Force to Assist Haiti

On Monday, Secretary of State Antony Blinken announced that the United States would provide $100 million to fund an international force that will attempt to end the violence in Haiti, where criminal gangs and the unstable incumbent government are locked in a vicious battle for power.

As Fox News reports, Blinken made his announcement while meeting with multiple Caribbean leaders in Jamaica. In addition to the $100 million, Blinken announced another $33 million in humanitarian aid for the small island nation, as well as the creation of a joint proposal agreed upon by Caribbean leaders “to expedite a political transition” in Haiti.

The meeting was hosted by leaders of a regional trade bloc known as Caricom, which has been advocating for a peaceful transition of power in Haiti. Despite the violence carried out by the street gangs, popular sentiment within Haiti seems to be more strongly opposed to the government in power, with protests demanding the resignation of Prime Minister Ariel Henry. Henry announced on Tuesday that he would resign only after a transitional presidential council is created.

“It is clear that Haiti is now at a tipping point,” said Jamaican Prime Minister Andrew Holness. “We are deeply distressed that it is already too late for too many who have lost far too much at the hands of criminal gangs.”

Since February 29th, criminal gangs have attacked key infrastructure points and government buildings throughout the capital city of Port-au-Prince, including the airports, police stations, and two of the country’s largest prisons, setting free over 4,000 inmates. A travel alert has since been issued by the U.S. State Department, urging Americans still in Haiti to flee immediately.

Dozens of Haitians have already been killed, while at least 15,000 have been left homeless, with the gang violence hastening the decline of an already impoverished nation.

Secretary-General Antonio Guterres of the United Nations has called for the deployment of an international force to quell the violence and restore order. Currently, only about $10.8 million has been spent on such efforts; Kenyan officials claim that at least $230 million is needed.

Prime Minister Henry is not currently in Haiti, having been in Puerto Rico at the time the violence broke out and awaiting the right time to return to Haiti once order has been restored. He did not attend the meeting in Jamaica with Blinken and other regional leaders.

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About Eric Lendrum

Eric Lendrum graduated from the University of California, Santa Barbara, where he was the Secretary of the College Republicans and the founding chairman of the school’s Young Americans for Freedom chapter. He has interned for Young America’s Foundation, the Heritage Foundation, and the White House, and has worked for numerous campaigns including the 2018 re-election of Congressman Devin Nunes (CA-22). He is currently a co-host of The Right Take podcast.

Photo: US Secretary of State Antony Blinken addresses a press conference in Tel Aviv on January 9, 2024, during his week-long trip aimed at calming tensions across the Middle East, amid continuing battles between Israel and the Palestinian militant group Hamas in Gaza. (Photo by EVELYN HOCKSTEIN/POOL/AFP via Getty Images)