Permanent Mission of the Russian Federation to the United Nations

Permanent Mission of the Russian Federation to the United Nations

Statement by First Deputy Permanent Representative Dmitry Polyanskiy at UNSC briefing on the situation in Haiti


We thank SRSG Salvador for the briefing on the situation in Haiti. We thank UNOCT Executive Director Waly and UNICEF Executive Director Russel for their inputs. We welcome the Foreign Minister of the Dominican Republic and the Permanent Representative of Haiti to this meeting.

As we all can clearly see, there are two parallel realities in Haiti at the moment. One is endless political squabble, behind-the-scenes attempts to agree, while observing parameters required by external players and being under external pressure. This results in agreements that exist on paper, get re-written many times over and hardly ever get implemented. The second reality is the horrifying daily life of ordinary Haitians, who have become accustomed to surviving in the absence of state authority and the basic services it is supposed to provide. The real power has fallen into the hands of armed militias that control entire areas of the country and districts in its capital. The political process has been inconclusive for several years, and the current administration has completely discredited itself, including by its inability and unwillingness to investigate the assassination of the President that was committed almost three years ago with direct foreign intervention.

People are tired of waiting for change and are taking responsibility for their lives into their own hands, self-organizing and defending their homes. To them, everything we discuss here in this Chamber looks disconnected from reality and the Security Council looks helpless and useless.

It is also true that the international community and the Security Council have so far failed to put the interests of the Haitian people first. We are constantly distracted by seemingly ambitious political arrangements, the feasibility and legitimacy of which are questionable. Now the Transitional Presidential Council (TPC) is presented nearly as a cure-all solution for Haiti. Let’s be frank, we do have serious doubts that it is designed on the basis of Haitian approaches, rather than some alien concepts, as it customarily happens. These doubts, in particular, are fueled by such requirements for TPC members as an unquestionably positive attitude towards foreign military presence in their country. Why was this aspect put almost on top of the agenda?

We are convinced that the establishment of transitional power structures in Haiti must take place with the direct participation of all Haitian parties, without any outside interference. Otherwise, we simply take another meaningless turn, which will do nothing to stabilize the situation in the country and give hope for a better future to its citizens.

Unfortunately, throughout its history, Haiti has been unable to escape that very external interference. It has cost Haiti thousands of lives, decades of instability and billions of dollars spent, for example, on paying shameful reparations (until 1947) to France for independence. Our French colleagues do not seem bothered by this situation. In such unflattering situations, they recommend that history be left to historians.

However, Haitians themselves find this unacceptable. This is evidenced by the just demand of a number of Haitian NGOs for Paris to compensate this money and channel it towards the development and security of Haiti. This initiative recently launched at the United Nations Permanent Forum on People of African Descent, a platform where, for the first time in a while, the UN spoke about the terrible consequences of centuries of slavery and oppression of peoples of the global South.

Haiti is undoubtedly one of the main victims of the colonial legacy, which continues to suffer from contemporary neocolonial practices, such as the engineering of the country's political landscape, targeted unilateral sanctions and the imposition of external rather than, as they say, "Haitian solutions".

At the same time, one certain state, which 200 years ago declared the entire American continent its "backyard" and which, according to publicly available information, has carried out at least 56 military interventions in Latin American countries, including 4 in Haiti, shows no real interest in helping to solve that country's problems.

Rather, it is exacerbating them. For example, according to UNODC, the main route for smuggling weapons to Haiti is by water and small aircraft from Florida. Neither the arms embargo imposed by the Security Council nor the numerous requests from the Panel of Experts of UNSC sanctions committee can stop this illegal flow. Washington just disregards them as pesky flies.

At the same time, faced with the current dramatic deterioration of the situation in Haiti, the United States promptly evacuated its citizens, while at the same time resuming the repatriation of Haitian migrants. It is obvious that the Americans are simply not interested in their future fate, as well as the fate of the millions of people remaining on the island, no matter what nice narrative they promote here.


The prospects of implementing the decision (that was hastily pushed through the Security Council) to send the Multinational Security Support Mission to promote Haiti's security remain dim. When a resolution authorizing this non-UN mission was hastily passed through the Council more than six months ago, with claims that action was urgently needed to save Haiti, we abstained in the voting. We were not satisfied with the lack of a clear concept of the mission, a clear mandate for its financing and staffing, and other aspects that in such cases should be elaborated in advance. After adopting the resolution and proclaiming from the UNSC podium how much they cared about the Haitians, the champions of this initiative clearly lost interest in it. Not only has the mission failed to deploy so far, but none of the issues we raised have been clarified.

This was a clear example of how the UN Security Council should not work. We shall not be surprised if, a year after the adoption of resolution 2699, the Security Support Mission still does not appear on the island. Then why was it necessary to hurry and, in fact, deceive the expectations of the Haitians? No one actually asked them whether they want the presence of foreign armed forces on their land or not. The "filter" for Transitional Presidential Council that I mentioned earlier (requirement for potential TPC members to be supportive of foreign presence) clearly evidences that.


It is clear to all of us that the complex crisis in Haiti has no simple and obvious solutions. Many factors, both external and internal, have converged. It is disappointing that those who have caused problems for Haiti for many decades are not going to make up for their mistakes today. We would like to say with all responsibility that Russia has no intention of indulging them, even though Haiti is thousands of kilometers from our borders. We stand in solidarity with ordinary Haitians and will insist that it is their interests, and not those of external players, that are at the heart of any plans and schemes for a settlement.

As a permanent member of the Security Council, Russia will continue to consistently advocate the well-considered and careful use of measures and instruments of international influence on the situation in Haiti, ensure that they lead to an improvement of the security situation and the rule of law, and facilitate a transition to a genuine and inclusive intra-Haitian political dialogue, which we believe to be the key to finding a lasting solution to the protracted crisis in that country.

Thank you.