Scandal: UN peacekeepers sexually abused women, minors in Haiti – Report

Reports of a research has revealed that United Nations peacekeepers in Haiti had abused their powers while they carried out their mission in the state, as they engaged in sexual exploitation of women, some of whom were minors.

According to the findings of the researchers from University of Birmingham and Ontario University, published in online platform, The Conversation, UN peacekeepers fathered hundreds of children during their controversial mission in Haiti.

The researchers said they spoke to 2,500 people in Haiti, asking them about their experience of the UN’s Stabilisation Mission in Haiti (MINUSTAH), which became one of the longest running peacekeeping mission.

Researchers said a common theme in the stories was “transactional sex,” with peacekeepers paying young women and leaving after a baby was fathered.

It was gathered that Peacekeepers were frequently repatriated after a pregnancy was made known.

The report found that a handful of the cases involving pregnancy came from rape.

Conversation reported that the UN Stabilisation Mission in Haiti (MINUSTAH) – the longest running mission by the organisation in the country (2004-2017) – was originally mandated to assist local Haitian institutions in a context of political instability and organised crime.

Its mandate was then extended due to natural disasters, most notably an earthquake in 2010 and Hurricane Matthew in 2016, both of which added to the volatility of the political situation in the country.

After 13 years of operation, MINUSTAH closed in October 2017, transitioning to the smaller UN Mission for Justice Support in Haiti.

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