Wednesday, October 20, 2004
The security situation in Haiti, the key to the country's political stability is getting worse. Its capital Port-au-Prince continues to be the setting for frequent gun battles and even beheadings over the last few days. At least 45 people have been killed. In the northern town of Gonaives, ravaged by floods last month, violent attacks are disrupting the relief efforts.
UN observers, aid workers and journalists there believe the causes of the violence are distinct, but many fear the undercurrents of political chaos are now flowing stronger than at any time since former president Jean-Bertrand Aristide left the country in February. Aristide supporters have stepped up their campaign to restore Mr Aristide, launching what they called Operation Baghdad. More beheadings have taken place since.
The 3,000 UN troops currently in Haiti, have made little progress in disarming the paramilitary gangs in the capital's slum areas but the UN is expected to send another 3700 more troops to the ailing nation.