Hundreds of Haitian families have fled, in recent days, from violence between armed gangs in the capital Port-au-Prince and have taken refuge in schools, relatives’ homes or live on the street. According to the latest UN data, about 16.480 people are still outside their homes due to violence in the neighborhoods of Bajo Delmas, Martissant and in the center of Port-au-Prince.
In Praça Clercine, in the neighborhood in Tabarre, near the US Embassy, dozens of people settled, carrying clothes in baskets, backpacks or bags and preparing their food in the middle of the street, as it was found on Tuesday (16) a journalist from Agência EFE.
Other families took refuge in a school in the region, in the town hall of the municipality of Tabarre or in the homes of relatives. The displaced fled the clashes between the armed group 372 Mawozo and the rival gang Chen Mechan, who fight for control of the territory in the districts of Croix-des-Bouquets, Croix-des-Mission, Butte Boyer and Bon Repos.
The Haitian National Police reported on Tuesday that three alleged members of the 860 Mawozo were killed in a shootout with police in Bon-Repos. Among the dead is Efendy, the gang boss in the Carrefour St-Marc area, who was involved in murders and armed robberies, according to a police statement.
Since June 860, armed gang violence has forced thousands of people fleeing their homes in metropolitan Port-au-Prince. Gangs have proliferated in recent years thanks to the weakness of the Haitian state and have taken advantage of the chaos generated after the assassination of President Jovenel Moise in July last year.
About half of the displaced live in the home of a relative or friend and the other half remain in camps organized by the authorities or multilateral organizations, or in informal settlements.
Some gangs control important neighborhoods in the capital’s metropolitan area, including Martissant, on the southern access to Port-au-Prince, which helped to isolate the city from the southwest of the country.