Doctors Without Borders (MSF) announced on Wednesday the temporary closure of its hospital in the shanty town of Cite-Soleil due to the deterioration of the security situation in Haiti in recent days, within the already serious context of crisis that the country is suffering.
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“Exposed to a high security risk, Doctors Without Borders is forced to close its Cite-Soleil hospital,” the NGO said in a statement.
The violence spreads in a very worrying way since last February 28 in all the districts of the Haitian capital, with the population caught in the crossfire between armed gangs and with no choice but to flee their homes.
“We are experiencing the effects of the war a few meters from our facilities. Our hospital has not been a direct target, but we have been a collateral victim of the fighting, since the hospital is on the front line” of fire in the fight for gangs for control of territory, said Vincent Harris, a member of MSF.
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The organization stated that it cannot guarantee the safety of its staff and patients after extremely violent clashes are taking place between heavily armed groups just meters from the hospital grounds.
Several stray bullets have been found inside the hospital and access has become almost impossible for patients, some of whom have been injured in clashes around the hospital grounds.
“We are aware that the closure of this hospital will seriously harm the inhabitants of Cite-Soleil, but our teams cannot work until security conditions are guaranteed,” continued the head of the NGO.
At least 60 people died between February 24 and March 4 and 50 are missing due to clashes between two coalitions of armed groups fighting for control of territory in Port-au-Prince, the G9 and the GPEP, according to a report. of the NGO Reseau National de Defense des Droits Humains (RNDDH).
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In addition, in the last week dozens of kidnappings were recorded, including students, parents of students and even people who were in their own homes.
This deterioration of the situation occurs after months marked by a worsening of the socioeconomic and political crisis in Haiti, a spiral of violence and the reappearance of cholera, which has already caused nearly 600 deaths in the country since last October.
All of this led the Haitian Prime Minister, Ariel Henry, to request the dispatch of a foreign force in October last year, without the international community giving a concrete response.
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