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Haiti prime minister commits to holding elections by August 2025, Caribbean leaders say

Jacqueline Charles, Miami Herald on

Published in News & Features

Haitian Prime Minister Ariel Henry has agreed to hold general elections in his crisis-ridden nation no later than Aug. 31, 2025, the Caribbean Community announced Wednesday as leaders concluded a summit in Guyana.

Bahamas Prime Minister Philip Davis said in order to achieve the goal, the 15-member regional bloc known as CARICOM, will lead an assessment team supported by the United Nations, the United States, Canada and the Organization of American States to help with election planning in Haiti. The committee is to report back to the community by March 31, he said.

Davis said the election commitment by Henry is “a significant step in the right direction” toward restoring constitutional government and authority to Haiti. The Caribbean Community, he said, also plans to invite key Haitians to participate in a meeting.

Davis said CARICOM is calling on all leaders in Haiti, including the current government, “to be able to sit down to make the necessary concessions to arrive at a resolution” over the political impasse.

Members of the regional bloc said they spent more than 25 hours over three days discussing the Haitian crisis, with international partners that included the U.S., Canada, France, the United Kingdom, Brazil and the U.N. joining leaders the 15-member organization.

“We had a frank and in-depth discussions on the situation in Haiti,” Davis said. “We are deeply concerned over the continued deterioration of the security, humanitarian and political situation in Haiti and more importantly we are more concerned over the continued delay in overcoming the political stalemate which has blocked the possibility of free and fair elections.”

 

The Caribbean Community has been attempting “to bring normalcy to Haiti,” he said, since before the July 7, 2021 assassination of President Jovenel Moïse. The president faced immense pressure from the international community over gang violence and a political crisis deepened by long-overdue elections and his push to change the constitution.

Following the recent deliberations with Henry, Davis said “a number of major steps and concessions were made to move the political process forward.”

“We think we have a workable solution,” he added, but it will require participation of key Haitians, “the political leaders, the private sector, the religious sector.”

Until now, Haiti’s political and civil society leaders have been unable to come to a consensus on how the country should be governed. Nearly three years after the assassination of Moïse, there is not one elected leader in the country.

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