Amnesty International writes to the United Nations (UN) asking the global body to probe the Kenyan Police over brutality before deployment to Haiti
Amnesty International has written to the UN Security Council with deep concerns that Kenyan law enforcement officers may soon be deployed to support the Haitian National Police to address insecurity caused by gang violence.
The Amnesty International Representative at the United Nations argues that the current Kenyan police human rights record and the excessive use of force against protestors over the last three months require assurance that the deployment of foreign security forces prevents the unlawful use of force and clear measures to against sexual exploitation and abuse.
Renzo Pomi, Amnesty International Representative at the United Nations, pointed out recent events of usage of excessive and unnecessary force, including lethal force, by security forces in Kenya has led to increased deaths and injuries of both adults and children.
“Accordingly, we emphasize the importance of examining the human rights track record of Kenyan security forces in full before endorsing their deployment to Haiti,” Pomi stated.
“We strongly urge you to take these concerns into account when considering endorsing the deployment of the proposed force. Protection of human rights should always be at the forefront of any decision-making process.”
In the detailed letter, Amnesty International mentioned they had documented at least 30 cases of police killings of protesters, including those during the anti-government protests.
In addition, Amnesty International cautioned that the Kenya police had a history of extrajudicial killings and enforced disappearances before endorsing their deployment to Haiti.
Amnesty International pointed out that together with other and 14 other partner organizations in the country they have documented a total of 371 people in 2021 and 2022, were reported to have been killed or disappeared in the custody of the police.
Amnesty International Representative at the United Nations pushed for public engagements and policy adoption with Haiti Civil Society, before the deployment of Kenyan police to quell gang violence.
“In addition to establishing in advance the safeguards proposed above, should also at minimum go through a meaningful consultation with Haitian civil society and adopt policies and practices that support a Haitian-led solution for long-term stability in the country,” Pomi stated.
Amnesty International is opposed to Haitians seeking sanctuary in countries in the Americas until responsible and human response safety needs to be put in place, decrying their exposure to racism and mass deportation.
“No Haitian national should be sent back to the country or to any place where they could be at real risk of serious human rights violations. Instead, they must receive access to protection without discrimination,” said Pomi.