US citizens advised to leave Haiti amid violence, fuel shortages

Sixteen Americans and a Canadian are currently being held by a gang in Haiti



Drivers wait in hopes of filling their tanks at one of the few remaining open gas stations in Port-au-Prince, Haiti. — AP
Drivers wait in hopes of filling their tanks at one of the few remaining open gas stations in Port-au-Prince, Haiti. — AP

By AFP

Published: Thu 11 Nov 2021, 9:33 PM

Washington on Thursday urged US citizens to leave Haiti as the Caribbean nation reels from gang violence, fuel shortages and political instability.

The US Embassy in Haiti issued a statement advising American citizens to “depart Haiti now via commercial means”.

US citizens “should carefully consider the risks of travelling to or remaining in Haiti in light of the current security situation and infrastructure challenges,” the embassy said.

Already burdened by months of political chaos and natural disaster, Haitians have faced even more hardship in recent weeks as unchecked gangs choked fuel access, cutting off power and water supplies in the process.

“Widespread fuel shortages may limit essential services in an emergency, including access to banks, money transfers, urgent medical care, internet and telecommunications, and public and private transportation options,” the US embassy said.

Gangs in the small island nation have kidnapped more than 780 people for ransom since the start of the year, according to the Port-au-Prince-based Center of Analysis and Research in Human Rights.

Sixteen Americans and a Canadian are currently being held by a gang and negotiations are ongoing to secure their release.


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