• Press Release

Child Protection Urged as the Multinational Security Support Mission Deploys to Haiti

July 2, 2024

© CLARENS SIFFROY/AFP via Getty Images

As the Multinational Security Support (MSS) Mission, led by the Kenyan police, began to deploy to Haiti last week, Amnesty International reiterated the urgent need to ensure the mission establishes safeguards to prevent human rights violations, provides child protection training to its personnel, and commits to operating with the highest standards of transparency, as previously recommended by the organization in a public statement issued on June 3, 2024.

“It is truly concerning that the deployment of the Kenyan police contingent to Haiti is going forward, without transparent information regarding whether or how it has implemented human rights safeguards,” said Ana Piquer, Americas Director at Amnesty International.

Among these protections is the need to ensure the MSS is prepared to encounter children during its operations, including children who have been recruited by gangs. Last week the UN Secretary-General reported on Haiti for the first time in his Annual Report on Children and Armed Conflict, revealing the UN had verified 383 grave violations committed against children in Haiti last year. They included recruitment and use, killing and maiming, and sexual violence predominantly by criminal gangs engaged in widespread violence and clashes with authorities.

“Kenya and Haiti have a shared responsibility, as do their allies like the United States, among others, to stop overlooking the suffering of thousands of Haitian children. Introducing foreign troops into Haiti without proper human rights training, use of force protocols and accountability mechanisms, further endangers the population, particularly children, who endure the daily onslaught of violence”, said Ana Piquer, Americas Director at Amnesty International.

Despite UN Security Council Resolution 2699 (2023) requiring the highest standards of transparency, pre-deployment and in-mission awareness training and an accessible complaint mechanism amongst other human rights safeguards, there is still a lack of detailed public information about the MSS Mission’s rules, procedures, and human rights violations accountability mechanisms. This lack of transparency raises significant concerns about all countries involved in the deployment of the MSS’s failure to comply with these obligations, and the potential human rights abuses once deployed.

Amnesty International calls for the implementation of rigorous vetting procedures and thorough training on United Nations principles, human rights law, the prevention of sexual exploitation and abuse, and children protection prior to and during deployment. Moreover, Amnesty International stresses the necessity of an accessible, independent, and transparent complaint mechanism to investigate all allegations of misconduct and human rights violations by MSS personnel.

“Comprehensive training on UN principles and human rights law is essential for mission personnel. An independent mechanism to handle complaints and ensure accountability must be established to protect children’s rights effectively”, Piquer emphasized.


Haiti’s crisis has worsened significantly since the assassination of President Jovenel Moïse in 2021, leading to rampant gang violence and widespread human rights violations. Historical peacebuilding missions in Haiti have often resulted in abuse and impunity, underscoring the need for rigorous human rights safeguards in any security mission.

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