It is not headline news in the United States that Haiti is in the midst of domestic unrest, but it is all too familiar news for Haitians.
Recently, the Haitian government proposed to enforce a 50% fuel price hike. Such an increase would make travel too costly and impossible for much of the population which relies on buses, taxis and tap-taps to get to school and work. And so, riots ensue. Again, elites and the impoverish clash, and domestic commerce and just daily life is caught up in unending strife.
We, ourselves, cannot solve this political instability. What we can do is focus our attention to the very fundamental and basic needs of a small community in Haiti, and hear their call to assist them in making their lives healthier and better. This is what Konbit does with its work in Limonade. While chaos surrounds Limonade, we will continue to support community health workers; address the needs of HIV affected families; and support the work of the local clinic director in reaching the poor through his “pop up” rural clinic initiative.
The following story from ABC News is more detailed. We ask you to read this and other articles from internationally oriented press as a way to put Haiti in your daily news briefings. And as always, we thank you for your contributions to our efforts. Our work makes children healthy so they may someday find a peaceful solution to such unrest.
More protests in Haiti as unrest continues over fuel prices
Protesters have been clashing with police in the Haitian capital while a general strike has kept most people at home across the country in a fourth day of unrest sparked by a now-rescinded government plan to raise fuel prices. Demonstrators linked to various opposition factions marched on the parliament building but were turned back by police. Protesters also set fire to a tax office in the Tabarre area of the capital. But much of Port-au-Prince and the country shut down. The general strike halted the mini-buses and taxis that most Haitians depend on to get to work or school. Most businesses closed after the people took advantage of the protests to loot shops around the capital. Public Security Secretary Ronsard Saint Cyr and leaders of the House of Deputies and Senate called for an end to the protests and to the general strike. Protests erupted Friday hours before the government-set price of fuel was to rise by up to 50 percent, part of a plan endorsed by the International Monetary Fund to modernize the economy. The Haitian government canceled the increase amid protests that left several people dead and prompted airlines to cancel flights to the impoverished country. Flights have resumed, allowing people who had been stuck in Haiti over the weekend, including groups of U.S. missionaries, to leave the country.