Home USA News The Soapbox: Haitian gangs, prison hunger strikes, Italy’s rejection of migrants

The Soapbox: Haitian gangs, prison hunger strikes, Italy’s rejection of migrants


The Soapbox is a weekly column from WSN’s news department that analyzes major events in world news and selects the stories we think are worth reading this week. A global consciousness for a global university.

In Haiti, the small concession from the groups leaves much to be desired

The leader of the Haitian gang federation G9 Family and Allies announced on November 4 that he would stop the blockade vital fuel facility. The blockade, which began in September, has crippled the country’s fuel supplies and left hospitals struggling to treat victims of an ongoing cholera outbreak.

Gang violence in Haiti has increased since then the assassination of then President Jovenel Moise in July 2021, with the surge culminating this summer in the G9 seizure of a fuel plant in the capital, Port-au-Prince. The gang tried to force Prime Minister Ariel Henry to resign, although he remains in power.

The G9 Group, led by Jimmy Cherisier, includes more than a dozen groups and claims to be fighting for a more equal Haiti. Cherizier, a former policeman, is accused of committing numerous atrocities — including mass killings of civilians and mass rapes — dating back to his time with the Haitian police. Supposedly his nickname is Barbecue come from his practice of setting people on firebut he claims it is from his mother, who was a fried chicken vendor.

In July, the UN issued a report on the number of violent gangs in Port-au-Prince, including 934 deaths – a figure that has likely risen since then. October 21 UN imposed sanctions Cherizier, condemning his alleged human rights violations and destabilization of the country. Serious food security and a cholera outbreak that killed more than 130 people have worsened the humanitarian situation so far.

According to the United Nations, 4.7 million Haitians live in the metropolitan area of ​​Cite-Salay to face acute hunger, with 19,000 experiencing “catastrophic” hunger. The “catastrophic” famine is the most severe famine ever reported in Haiti. Malnutrition leaves people, especially children, more vulnerable to cholera, worsening the current outbreak. In the face of many growing crises, ending the fuel blockade is only a small step towards restoring normal life in the affected country.

“There’s one thing I’m asking God for: ‘give us peace,'” said Johnny Jean Baptiste, a resident of Port-au-Prince. told NPR. “As a young person, I believe that things can change, because if things stay the same, it will be the end of my life.”

In Egypt, a British detainee who declared a hunger strike was forcibly given medical care

An Egyptian British activist who has was on hunger strike from 2 April 6 November during the United Nations Climate Change Conference COP27 in Sharm el-Sheikh, Egypt, the UK Prime Minister Rishi Sunak is present during the conference, a water fast began. Alaa Abd el-Fattah protested against his conditions and petitioned for his release forcibly found themselves under medical care by the Egyptian authorities on November 10. The circumstances and nature of his treatment remain unclear.

El-Fatah was a a leading democratic figure during the 2011 Arab Spring uprisings, but was jailed in 2015 after a coup that brought an authoritarian leader to power. He was briefly released on parole in 2019, but was arrested again six months later and has remained in custody ever since. Amnesty International claims that guards tortured el-Fattah during the detention.

Which has received British citizenship in mid-April, through his mother, El-Fattah and his family hoped that dual citizenship would lead to his release. Egypt has previously allowed other jailed activists renounce citizenship and leave the country. Despite the fact that United Nations and Sunak presses on Egypt the Egyptian government refused to release el-Fattah.

Now the el-Fattah family a call to the prison to allow them to visit el-Fattah because of concerns that he might die in a medical facility. He has not been heard from since receiving a letter on Sunday, November 6, informing him of his intention to give up the water.

On November 7, El-Fatah’s sister, activist Sana Seif, wrote an article in The Guardian asking Sunak to intervene and save her brother’s life.

“He’s not doing this because he wants to die, but because it’s the only way he can live again,” Seif wrote. “He spent all but one year of his son’s life in prison for his writings on democracy and technology, as well as his anti-authoritarian stance. The whole world is watching what’s happening in Sharm el-Sheikh, where I’m writing this from, and he’s betting his life on the belief that the world will support him today.”

Italy’s refusal to accept a ship with migrants angered France

After two weeks at sea off the coast of Italy, there will be hundreds of asylum seekers finally you can disembark in France on November 11. The Ocean Viking lifeboat, which was carrying 234 refugees, was one of the four vessels in the Mediterranean Sea, which picked up migrants in danger for their lives.

Three other ships were eventually allowed to dock in Italy. Initially, the Italian government refused to allow healthy adult men to disembarkalthough this decision was canceled after an international outcry and an announcement of a hunger strike by other passengers.

All four ships were registered in either Germany or Norway, and the Italian interior minister had called those nations to receive passengers. Although France eventually accepted asylum seekers, it has done so reluctantly and since then suspended the previously agreed agreement on migrants with Italy that France would accept 3,500 refugees.

Italy’s decision to abandon migrant vessels is in line with the policies of new Prime Minister Giorgia Meloni, who heads the fascist “Brothers of Italy” party. She has promised to present crackdown on migrants, and once said Italy should “send the migrants back to their countries and then sink the boats that rescued them”.

In France, anti-immigrant sentiment also fueled the rise of far-right parties that were quick to condemn country adoption of Ocean Viking. Marine Le Pen, a member of the National Rally who lost her third presidential bid this year, said France had been “drastically” soft on immigration. The so-called “migrant crisis” has raged across Europe for years, with tensions rising between countries over how best to deal with arrivals who this year there were more than 150 thousand of them.11

“The legal obligation to save and ensure the safety of life at sea is clear and unambiguous, regardless of the circumstances that brought people into distress,” the European Commission said. wrote in a statement dated November 9. “The situation we are witnessing in the Mediterranean shows once again the urgent need for a single, cohesive migration and asylum policy.”

Contact Torrey Morales at [email protected]

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