UN will support Haitian government in new "development focus"

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Marc-André Blanchard. UN Photo/Manuel Elias

The international community and the UN need to support and collaborate with the Haitian government in its move towards a new "development focus".

That's the view of Marc-André Blanchard, Chair of the UN Economic and Social Council, Ad Hoc advisory Group on Haiti, and also Canada's Ambassador to the UN.

Matthew Wells has more.

Mr Blanchard has recently returned from a visit to Haiti, and said there was a clear "opportunity for action" as long as the UN and other international actors work closely with the government.

After suffering years of humanitarian crisis following the 2010 earthquake and political upheaval, the Caribbean island nation has a newly-elected president and government, that appears to be working well, said the ambassador.

The UN peacekeeping Mission MINUSTAH, is winding down after 14 years, and making way for a new mission, MINUJUSTH, which has a mandate to help build new institutions in Haiti.

Mr Blanchard said the transition made sense at this crucial juncture in Haiti's history.

"MINUSTAH was there in a very difficult period and was actually able to achieve a lot – everybody agrees that the country is more… in a better situation now than it was five years ago. Also, everybody agrees that the country is more secure now than it was a few years ago. So, its not perfect, there are still some security issues, there are many issues with institutions, still issues with corruption, and the likes. But this is why the MINUJUSTH transitioning to a focus on the rule of law and governance and institutions is the right one for the future involvement of the UN."

MINUSTAH lost 103 of its staff members to the devastating 2010 earthquake, which killed tens of thousands.

Matthew Wells, United Nations.

Duration: 1’22″

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