The UN Security Council is Monday expected to vote on a resolution that will see an international force led by Kenya deployed to Haiti to quell a surge in gang violence.
The 15-member council is set to develop the framework for and authorise a one-year deployment of the force, with a review after nine months.
If approved by the UN, Kenya will deploy 1,000 police officers to Haiti by January next year.
In a statement in July 2023, Kenya´s Foreign Affairs Cabinet Secretary Dr. Alfred Mutua, said the proposed deployment will take shape once a mandate from the UN Security Council is obtained and other Kenyan constitutional processes are undertaken.
“At the request of Friends of Haiti Group of Nations, Kenya has accepted to positively consider leading a Multi-National Force to Haiti,” said Dr. Mutua.
“Kenya stands with persons of African descent across the world, including those in the Caribbean, and aligns with the African Union’s diaspora policy and our own commitment to Pan Africanism, and in this case to “reclaiming of the Atlantic crossing”, he added.
The Bahamas, Jamaica and Antigua and Barbuda have said they will take part in the mission.
The force will help train Haitian police and rebuild vital infrastructure which has been overrun by criminal gangs.
The US has pledged $100m (£82m) to support the mission.
Haiti has suffered from gang violence for decades but the current wave of brutality escalated after the July 2021 assassination of President Jovenel Moïse.
Gangs have taken control of large parts of the country, waging terror on residents and killing hundreds.
Last month (September 2023), Kenya formally established diplomatic relations with Haiti.
President William Ruto and Haiti Prime Minister Ariel Henry witnessed the signing of the agreement at the Kenyan Mission in New York, United States.
The agreement signed by Minister Jean Victor Génus and Cabinet Secretary Alfred Mutua will facilitate cooperation in areas of mutual interest.
The President called for a holistic approach that includes political, security, and developmental considerations to effectively address the situation in Haiti.
He said Kenya will do its part in leading a well-resourced and effective Multinational Security Support Mission in the country.
“As the leading nation in the UN-backed security mission in Haiti, we are committed to deploying a specialized team to comprehensively assess the situation and formulate actionable strategies that will lead to long-term solutions,” he said.
Prime Minister Henry said Haiti needs all the necessary support to address immense security, humanitarian, environmental and economic challenges framework for today’s deployment.
He said the people of Haiti look forward to the elimination of criminal gangs that have been inflicting terror since 2021.