The UN in Haiti

The alleged rape of an 18-year-old man by UN peacekeepers in Haiti is the latest black eye for the UN's embattled MINUSTAH mission and it is leading some to argue that it's time for MINUSTAH to leave the country or refocus its mission.



Part One of The Current

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It's Wednesday, September 7th.

In a new report, the City of Vancouver blasts the NHL for not having an anti-riot strategy in place.

Currently, the NHL responded by restating its long-standing policy that violence should be restricted to the ice.

This is The Current.

The UN in Haiti - Michael Deibert

We started this segment with the sound of protests outside the United Nations Headquarters in New York City on August 5th. Activists bearing Haitian flags carried coffins with slogans reading "UN troops out of Haiti."

The United Nations Stabilization Mission in Haiti or MINUSTAH, as it's more commonly known - has been in Haiti for seven controversial years. And the controversy took another twist in the past few days with allegations that an 18-year-old Haitian man was gang-raped by UN peackeepers from Uruguay. Yesterday Uruguay's defence minister said his country, Uruguay should apologize to Haiti and give reparations to the young man who is making the allegations.

A cell phone video of the alleged incident has sparked protests in Haiti ... further straining relations with the 12-thousand-strong UN peacekeeping force and leaving many wondering whether the UN presence in Haiti is more of a hindrance than a help.

Carla Bluntschli has lived in Haiti and worked for NGO's there for 26 years. We aired a clip with what she had to say about the MINUSTAH presence in her home of Gros Jean ... a community just outside Port-au-Prince.

Michael Deibert is a journalist who has covered Haiti extensively. He is the author of Notes from the Last Testament: The Struggle for Haiti and Visiting Fellow at the Centre for Peace and Reconciliation Studies at Coventry University in the United Kingdom. We reached Michael Deibert in New Orleans.

The UN in Haiti - Nigel Fisher

The United Nations Stabilization Mission in Haiti - or MINUSTAH - was established in 2004 after then-President Bertrand Aristide was ousted from office. Despite the controversies that have swirled around it, the UN mission's size has grown - and its mission extended - over the years. Its current mandate, as we just heard, expires October 15th.

Nigel Fisher is the United Nations humanitarian coordinator in Haiti and the Deputy Special Representative for MINUSTAH. He was in Port-au-Prince.

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