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Kenya – UN mission: justice blocks the sending of 1000 police officers to Haiti

A Kenyan court seized by the opposition temporarily suspended on Monday a government plan to send police officers to Haiti as part of a UN mission to secure this Caribbean country plagued by gang violence.

With the authorization of the UN Security Council, Kenya was to lead a multinational force to combat gang violence in Haiti and send a thousand police officers there. But on Monday October 9, the Kenyan High Court put the brakes on this enterprise.

Seized by lawyer and opponent Ekuru Aukot, the Nairobi High Court ruled on Monday that the opposition’s request raised “issues of importance to the country and the public interest which require urgent attention”. Judge Enock Mwita therefore issued a “protective order” suspending the deployment of police officers to Haiti or any other country until October 24.

Mr. Aukot denounces the desire to deploy Kenyan police officers abroad at a time when the country is struggling to combat insecurity within its borders. Opponents of this mission also point out that the troubled history of foreign interventions in Haiti shows that Kenyan police officers could be perceived as an interfering force there.