The United Nations has approved an independent Kenya-led multinational mission to the violence-stricken nation of Haiti.
The mission, known as the Multinational Security Support (MSS) mission, was approved by the UN Security Council on Monday with 13 votes in favor and two abstentions.
It will be in force for a year, with a review after nine months.
The MSS mission will be led by Kenya, with support from Antigua and Barbuda, Suriname, Jamaica, and the Bahamas.
The US State Department has pledged to provide $100 million in foreign aid, while the Department of Defense will provide up to $100 million in enabling support.
However, Sir Ronald Sanders, Antigua and Barbuda’s most senior diplomat to the Organization of American States (OAS), has questioned the role of the US and France in the mission.
He argued that these two countries, which have played a significant role in the underdevelopment and current condition of Haiti, should also provide support.
Sir Ronald claimed that the focus seems to be on the Caribbean to send troops when France and the US have not pledged any troops despite being responsible for Haiti’s plight for over a century.
Several historians have linked Haiti’s underdevelopment to the US and France’s efforts in the 19th century to isolate and bankrupt the resource-rich island.
He questioned why the US is only putting up money for other people to go and why they are looking at the Caribbean and Africa to solve the problem.
Sir Ronald said that Caribbean countries, which have limited financial and personnel resources and little responsibility for the situation in Haiti, should not be asked to bear the brunt of solving the crisis.
He suggested that the Caribbean role should be one of diplomatic support for the issues that affect Haiti, such as underdevelopment, corruption, administrative structures, education, health, and infrastructure.
He acknowledged that there was a security challenge relating to the gangs that have practically controlled the Haitian capital since the assassination of the country’s president in July 2021.
However, he emphasized that a democratically elected government needs to be in place first.