OAN’s Roy Francis
9:49 AM – Friday, July 28, 2023
The United States State Department has ordered non-emergency personnel at the U.S. embassy in Haiti, along with all family members, to leave the Caribbean nation immediately.
The State Department also extended the warning towards all U.S. citizens in the nation saying that they should leave Haiti as soon as possible. The urgent warning comes from the State Department as violence and chaos in Haiti has been on the rise.
“On July 27, 2023, the Department of State ordered the departure of family members of U.S. government employees and non-emergency U.S. government employees,” the State Department said in a new travel advisory. “U.S. citizens in Haiti should depart Haiti as soon as possible by commercial or other privately available transportation options, in light of the current security situation and infrastructure challenges. U.S. citizens wishing to depart Port-au-Prince should monitor local news and only do so when considered safe.”
In its travel advisory, the State Department warned that U.S. citizens are being regularly targeted in kidnappings throughout the country.
“Kidnapping is widespread, and victims regularly include U.S. citizens,” the travel advisory said. “Kidnappers may use sophisticated planning or take advantage of unplanned opportunities, and even convoys have been attacked. Kidnapping cases often involve ransom negotiations and U.S. citizen victims have been physically harmed during kidnappings. Victim’s families have paid thousands of dollars to rescue their family members.”
The State Department also warned that the United States government’s ability to provide emergency services to its citizens in Haiti is “extremely limited.”
“Given the recent armed clashes between gangs and the police and the high threat of violent crime and kidnapping throughout Port-au-Prince, the Department of State urges U.S. citizens to make plans to depart Haiti as soon as possible via commercial means,” the State Department announced. “The most recent violent clashes have particularly affected the neighborhoods of Vivy Michel, Tabarre, Torcel, Tapage and Trutier. The U.S. government is extremely limited in its ability to provide emergency services to U.S. citizens in Haiti.”
Haiti has struggled to contain the violence that has been on the rise recently. Heavily armed gangs throughout the nation have caused a humanitarian crisis which has displaced tens of thousands of people.
Frequent kidnappings for ransom, which include targeted U.S. citizens, along with gang rapes, tortures and murders have been steadily rising since 2021 when President Jovenel Moïse was assassinated.
The Caribbean nation has yet to elect a new leader.
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