Rival gangs have been fighting for territory in the Haitian slum of Cité Soleil for almost a week. 89 people die, 74 are injured. Human rights organizations warn of a humanitarian catastrophe.
Gang fighting in Haiti's capital, Port-au-Prince, has reportedly killed at least 89 people in five days. Another 16 people are missing and there are also 74 injured, Haitian media reported, citing the human rights organization RNDDH. At least 127 houses were set on fire or destroyed.
According to a statement by the organization Doctors Without Borders, thousands of people were trapped in the Cité Soleil district without drinking water, food and medical care. The local UN office tweeted that a total of 1.5 million people could no longer move freely in the city because of gang violence. Humanitarian workers must be granted immediate access to them to provide emergency relief.
Since last Friday, heavily armed gangs have been fighting each other for territory in Cité Soleil - a large, densely populated slum on the outskirts of Port-au-Prince. For more than a year, such fighting in the greater capital area has significantly worsened the already difficult security situation in the poorest country on the American continent. Thousands of people had to leave their homes, and there were supply bottlenecks. Between April 24 and May 6 alone, gang fighting claimed the lives of 191 people, including eight children, according to an RNDDH report.
"Doctors Without Borders calls on the armed groups to protect civilians and allow humanitarian organizations to respond to the urgent needs of the population," the organization said in a statement. "Along the only road into Brooklyn (part of the Cité Soleil), we encountered bodies that were decomposing or burned," said MSF country coordinator Mumuza Muhind. "People have no access to water, electricity or latrines, and medical care is urgently needed."