Friday 5 April 2024

‘It’s Like the End of Times’: UN Expert Predicts ‘Apocalyptic Scenario’ in Haiti May Fuel Mass Exodus Towards the US ‘In Weeks’


 “the present situation in Haiti defies our capacity for hyperbole. […] MSM headlines try to describe it by saying that Haiti ‘may fall at any time,’ is ‘on the brink,’ ‘spiraling into chaos,’ and further pointing out that ‘a major humanitarian crisis is unfolding’.”

Right now, this sentiment is echoed by sources on the ground, with UN’s top expert on human rights in Haiti saying ‘I’m running out of words frankly at this point … it’s apocalyptic, it’s like the end of times’.

William O’Neill is an American human rights lawyer with 30 years of experience in Haiti.

He says that the gang rebellion that started in early March has deteriorated the situation in the capital Port-au-Prince to unprecedented levels.


Haiti, O’Neill warns, is rapidly moving towards becoming ‘like Somalia in the worst of its times’.

Haitian police is completely overpowered by the gangs.

The Guardian reported:

“’I know someone who lost half her family to [former dictator] François Duvalier’s execution squads and she said she’s never seen it this bad. Uncles, cousins, brothers killed – and she said it’s never been this bad’, O’Neill said from Geneva.

‘I’m running out of words frankly at this point … it’s apocalyptic, it’s like the end of times’, added the UN’s independent expert, who helped set up the resource-starved Haitian police force that is now battling to stem the tide in the mid-1990s. ‘[There’s] a level of intensity and cruelty in the violence that is simply unprecedented in my experience in Haiti’.”

We have been covering the unfolding crisis that turned Haiti into a ‘prison island’, with the international airport has been closed since early March because of the violence and foreigners being evacuated by helicopter.

 Heavily armed gangs are the real power on the ground.


The heavily armed gang rebels have reportedly attacked schools, universities, hospitals, banks, businesses and the political heart of the Haitian capital.

Even the national library was looted. 

More than 1,500 people have been killed in the first three months of 2024, as political leaders line up to gain a place on the ‘Transition Council’. 

Gang rebel leader Jimmy ‘Barbecue’ Chérizier has threatened the political leaders involved in the ‘Transition Council’.

“O’Neill is no stranger to challenging security situations, having worked in hotspots including Rwanda, Sierra Leone, Kosovo, Bosnia, Nepal and South Sudan. But he expressed shock at the almost complete evaporation of Haitian authorities in the face of the gang mutiny, which started on 29 February and forced the prime minister, Ariel Henry, to announce his resignation from abroad. Haiti held its last election in 2016 and has lacked a president since 2021 when Jovenel Moïse was assassinated in his Port-au-Prince home. Haiti currently has no elected officials.

‘Here, I think what’s different is that the state is virtually absent … There is no state and that’s almost like a Hobbesian world where it’s really the survival of the fittest … and unfortunately the fittest right now are the gangs’, said O’Neill, who thought only a minor miracle was helping Haiti’s outgunned police prevent a total takeover.”

O’Neill fears the turmoil could soon fuel a massive exodus of refugees to the US and Dominican Republic, a nightmarish scenario ‘weeks [away] at worst, months at best’.

“It’s really now descending into something that’s like Somalia in the worst of its times, a 90-minute flight from Miami. We’re not there yet. But we’re perilously close.”

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