UN Security Council envoys to visit Haiti
UN Security Council ambassadors will travel to Haiti this month for a first-hand look at the political situation following a decision to draw down the UN mission there.
New York: UN Security Council ambassadors will travel to Haiti this month for a first-hand look at the political situation following a decision to draw down the UN mission there.
The envoys will push President Michel Martelly to set a timetable for elections during the visit from January 23 to 25 as a key step to bolster stability, Chilean Ambassador Cristian Barros Melet said Monday.
"The objective is to provide support to the Haitian process," said the Chilean envoy, whose country holds this month`s presidency of the 15-member council.
"Today the priority for the president of Haiti is to decide on a credible and feasible timetable for these elections," he said.
Martelly last week signed a deal with parliamentary leaders to allow lawmakers to remain in office until elections are organised early next year.
The Security Council decided in October to extend the mandate of the UN mission in Haiti but cut back its strength from 5,000 troops to 2,370. The UN police contingent will remain unchanged at 2,601.
Argentina and Chile, which provide troops for the force, have expressed reservations over the cuts, warning that tensions are high over the failure to hold elections over the past three years.
Martelly has called for parliament to convene on January 12 to endorse the appointment of new Prime Minister Evans Paul who will be tasked with forming a government.
One of the poorest countries in the Americas, Haiti has been struggling to restore stability since the fall of president Jean-Bertrand Aristide in 2004.