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Military

Uruguay to Withdraw Peacekeepers from Haiti

Uruguay deployed peace keeping force in Haiti since when chaos erupted at the end of Jean-Bertrand Aristide's presidency in 2004. It was a part of United Nations Stabilization Mission in Haiti (MINUSTAH). Uruguay has contributed almost 1,000 soldiers to the 9000 strong U. N peace keeping mission in Haiti. The force has been under intense scrutiny for years and is blamed for many reasons.

Last year at Port-au-Prince, the protesters clashed with the police while demanding withdrawal of this peace keeping force from the country. They were angry over an alleged sexual assault over an 18-year-old Haitian man by peacekeepers from Uruguay.

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Haiti new National Defense Force, not new Army, Jean Rodolphe Joazile

Minister Jean Rodolphe Joazile to form armed forces soon

In an attempt to alleviate at least some of the trepidation expressed by Haitian citizens upon learning of the secret training underwent by 41 of the country's brightest in Ecuador, and their return to possibly create a new Haitian army, Minister of Defense, Jean Rodolphe Joazile announced on Wednesday October 9th that the returning young people, including 30 soldier-technicians and 11 officer-engineers, were not part of a new army, but a new Civil Defense Force.

According to the Defense Minister, there is a need for the force within the country, as such, 40 additional young people will journey away from Haiti by the end of the year for civil engineering military training. It is part of a three year plan to implement a complete Civil Defense Force.

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Martelly restores the Haitian army with 41 New Young Officers trained in Ecuador

Making good on a campaign promise is probably a good position for a politician to take, however, to do so without consulting with various relevant bodies that would need to know of something as big as the training and possibly deployment of a quasi-military force, is, as the Americans would say, a horse of a different color.

President Michel Martelly recently announced the return of 41 engineers, officers and technicians who had left the country to pursue a ten month training program at a facility in Ecuador, unbeknownst to the public, as well as to parliament. Also out of the loop, was the Artibonite Senator, who reacted with sarcasm when asked about the report that the returnees will be completing an internship until the end of the year at the Petite Riviere de l'Artibonite.

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Government welcomes Haitian engineers and technicians from military training in Ecuador

After rigorous training over the course of 10 months spent in a foreign country, 41 of Haiti's brightest return home to be part of the new, impending quasi-military force which is the brainchild of current President, Michel Martelly.

The move to ship the over 40 men to Ecuador to undergo their training was Martelly's answer after his campaign promise to reinstitute the army, which had been disbanded after the Aristide coup, among other serious charges of abuse of power, was met by overwhelming dissent by the U.S. and other world governments, which cited a concern that a new army would derail the efforts being made to create a police force of civilians.

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Haiti Minister of Defense Jean Rodolphe Joazile: Haiti will soon form armed forces

Minister Jean Rodolphe Joazile to form armed forces soon

In a declaration, Defense Minister for Haiti stated that Haiti will soon have her own armed forces. He gave indications that the armed forces will be formed before the end of Presidential term of Michel Martelly. The Minister stated that it was one of the promises made by the President during the election campaigns and the President intends to keep the promise.

Defense Minister, Jean Rodolphe Joazile stated that Haiti currently has the support from other countries which include Ecuador, Uruguay, Brazil and France. He mentioned that the first recruits for the Haitian armed forces will originate in the countries supporting the decision. The minister also explained that the individuals who are hopeful to be recruited to the Haitian armed forces are from different backgrounds and that they will be arriving in Haiti by the end of this year.

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The Leopard Corps in Haiti During Jean Claude Duvalier Reign

Jean Claude Duvalier and Michele Bennett - Leopard Uniform

During the Government of Jean-Claude Duvalier, he attempted to balance the power between the existing Armed forces and created as a result created a new military force, the Leopards Corps. The Haitian Armed Forces, also known as Forces Armees d'Haïti, (FAD'H) and the Tontons Macoutes, Volontaires de la Securite Nationale (VSN) were the two main military powers in the country before that. The VSN was an informal force and accused for many cases of abuse. The government of Jean Claude Duvalier was under pressure from the international community to decrease the level of abuse. The creation of the new force, the Leopard Corps, was designated to take care of the problem.

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Colonel Octave Cayard, Commandant of the Haitian Coast

Colonel Octave Cayard, on the morning of April 24, 1970, led a section of the Haitian Coast Guard into a rebellion against the Duvalier government and a naval attack on Port-au-Prince. In a United States memorandum sent to Washington, the event was chronicled by Viron P. Vaky, who wrote that the revolting guards had acted in desperation after those plotting a coup against the then president, Cayard included, had gotten wind that the controversial leader was in pursuit of them.

At 9am Colonel Octave Cayard declared in a telephone call that he would capture the Coast Guard's largest vessels. By sixteen minutes to twelve a round was fired, but landed short of the Palace. Though a subsequent ten rounds were fired, Vaky reported that things were 'reasonably calm' and that there was no sign of additional forces joining the erstwhile rebellion as ground troops appeared patriotic to the government.

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Demobilized Haitian soldiers in Legislative Building disturbed Chamber of Deputies

The soldiers, who were fully armored, stayed outside the legislative building and were unable to enter the building. The soldiers had 3 pickups and a bus, all with obscured number plates, and were trying to air their grievances. The demobilized soldiers interrupted a meeting that was ongoing. The members present in the meeting were to form a commission that will be vet viability of designated Prime Minister, Laurent Lamothe.

The Demobilized Haitian soldiers were protesting against actions that will be taken by the minister for justice and I quote his sentiments, "I will seek police officers in special units of the police, and send them to attack the military that are on bases." They said they are in the constitution and that cannot be changed by anyone.

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The PNH takes control of camp Lamentin, more than 50 arrests

Some incidents that have been happening around Haiti have shocked many and are making the government look powerless. Men who claim to be former demobilized soldiers have been taking over former military bases, including camp Lamentin and causing a lot of fear and terror among Haitians.

50 arrests have been done so far under two separate operations; Lamentin and Bon Repos operations. The measures taken are worth as the men had earlier come in front of the national palace with full armor, though they did not do any harm anyone. Analysts think that there are better ways to voice their demands.

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Ecuador President Rafael Correa to help Haiti with New Military Force

With the planned developments for Haiti under the young administration of President Michel Martelly and Prime Minister Laurent Lamothe, the country needs great assistance and cooperation, especially with its neighboring countries in Latin America and the Caribbean. That is why the Martelly-Lamothe administration has been very keen and active in obtaining foreign support for its different sectors and projects.

The most recent development with regards to international ties and relations is with neighboring Ecuador. In July of 2012, President Martelly met with Ecuadorian President Rafael Correa in order to gain mutual cooperation with regards to national security and defense. Both countries have signed to a number of agreements on this matter with respect to strengthening ties and solidarity between the two nations. In one of these agreements, Ecuador promised a 13.5 million dollar fund for Haiti in order to reconstruct the country amidst the aftermath of the 2010 earthquake. Another agreement also included mutual cooperation with regards to providing an engineering force, new military units, and marine rescue facilities in Haiti, as well as providing military force in its borders, aviation units, and anti-riot forces in order to overturn armed threats to the country's security. The cooperation of both countries will also include the training of military staff and personnel and the reconstructing and building of different infrastructure to stabilize the economic situation of Haitians.

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