The United Nations (UN) Security Council has voted to allow the deployment of a multinational force led by the Kenyan Police in Haiti. The multinational force aims to restore peace in Haiti, a gang-controlled Caribbean Nation.
The UN Security Council met on Monday, where thirteen countries voted in favour of the mission. Despite the doubts surrounding the mission, none of the countries in the meeting voted against the resolution.
The Security Council comprises 15 countries in total. The United States, United Kingdom, France, China, and Russia are the countries that have Veto powers in the council. China and Russia were, however, abstained from the vote presented before the council.
China and Russia have reservations about the blanket use of force to solve the crisis in Haiti. This is considered in Chapter 7 of the founding UN Charter.
” More than just a vote, this is an expression of solidarity with a population in distress. It’s a glimmer of hope for the people that have for too long been suffering,” Haiti’s Foreign Minister mentioned.
Approval of the vote means that by January 2024, Kenya will lead a multinational force with 1,000 Kenyan police. The UN Security Council will announce the framework before sending the police officers and requires a review every nine months.
Despite the decision being unanimous, the local Haitian and International stakeholders asked for accountability and clarity throughout the mission. This is after they sought to know how Kenya would overcome cultural, language, and geographical barriers while leading the controversial mission.
Cabinet Secretary, Alfred Mutua, expressed his gratitude to the UN Security Council for voting towards Kenya to send its officers to the region.
I thank the United Nations Security Council #UNSC for adopting the Resolution that gives the mandate to intervene in Haiti to help our suffering brothers and sisters. I thank all those that have constructively participated to make the resolution fit for purpose and the effective… pic.twitter.com/Cfuz2efv3p— 𝓓𝓻. 𝓐𝓵𝓯𝓻𝓮𝓭 𝓝. 𝓜𝓾𝓽𝓾𝓪 (@DrAlfredMutua) October 2, 2023
Sending Troops to Haiti; Legal or Illegal
Although the UN has voted to send Kenyan police to Haiti, it is facing some legal challenges within the country. Eugene Wamalwa, Former Defence Cabinet Secretary and Willy Mutunga, Former Chief Justice have labelled the move as illegal and risky.
According to Mutunga, sending troops would be unconstitutional and set precedence for consistent disregard of what the Constitution states. He further mentioned that the Kenyan police are not well equipped to adequately deal with the gangs that have become prevalent in the country. Furthermore, he stated that the move would be unconstitutional since the citizens have not been allowed to have a say in the matter.
Other critics mention that Haiti and Kenya are at the same level of need and poverty. It would only be a suicide mission for the Kenyan officers in Haiti and the consequences would be devastating. They further mentioned that there have been other missions sent in the region but have bore no fruits and this would just be another example.
Despite the vote being subject to the Security Council, the mission will in no way be under the UN’s control. Consequently, the activities may be subject to sending reviews every nine months but are entirely independent.
Other citizens mentioned that Kenya could be used as a proxy to help subdue the gangs in Haiti. This is after the United States and Kenya signed a Ksh 14.8 billion defence deal agreement as part of support for Kenya’s Security mission.
Kenya has just been given the Greenlight to lead with 1000 member police forces in the UN backed Haiti mission.— Myron Thee OG (@myron_mhindi) October 3, 2023
Russia and China abstained in the UN security council vote to make it 13 to 2 on vote.
But why are other countries reluctant to lead this mission?
Surely, the USA or… pic.twitter.com/ZyaSbGMUuB