Haiti Catholic Nuns Attacked 39 Times Within 4 Months

Catholic nuns have become the primary targets of violence in Haiti since last November. There have been over 39 cases of attacks reported on from about 27 different religious outposts in six regional departments in Haiti since November 2014. The authorities are investigating to identify the real motives behind these attacks, although in most cases, the prime objective were found to be robberies of valuables other than physical violence on the nuns. It is really hard to figure out who and what is behind the attacks that seem like something more than pure robbery. There were some unconfirmed reports of rape in some occasions which often led to serious injury. So far, no one has been killed, although a traumatized nun died in surgery and another slipped into a coma after the attack. As per Cardinal Chibly Langlois's statement, since November 2014 to the present day, about 20 houses belonging to the nuns have been attacked; religious women were beaten and brutalized. Without being disturbed, looters take everything they can--money and other small valuables, papers of identification and other important documents.


Some of the Catholic Churches had been attacked repeatedly, three, four times. Some of the communities attacked did not have any valuable at all or enough money to lure attackers. Herve Zamor of Conference Haitienne des Religieuses, which coordinates Catholic groups that work in Haiti, is of opinion that this raises a suspicion of some unknown but definite hidden motivation behind these attacks on defenseless nuns. It is also possible that there is some political motivation behind these violence. The Catholic Church is playing a prominent role to ease out the tension torn environment in Haiti by smoothing away the way for long delayed election--a cause for dismay to some camps.

In the last week of March, the Haitian police have arrested five persons responsible for carrying out the attacks and are still continuing their search for 10 more gang members connected to the attacks. However, people are not very happy with the police's role. Denis Regis, the UN Ambassador to Haiti has recently said that the Haitian government should appreciate the role and presence of U.N police in Haiti and support their increased participation in the daily task of providing security and safety to the civilians.

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