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United Nations humanitarian agencies have started delivering aid directly to people in Haiti following a recent spike in violence between rival gangs that has fuelled a worsening crisis across the capital, Port-au-Prince.
The UN said that vulnerable inhabitants of the commune of Cité Soleil, as well as those in other neighborhoods of Port-au-Prince, have received items such as hygiene and baby supplies, plastic sheeting, jerry cans for water, blankets, solar lamps and repair items for houses from the UN’s International Organization for Migration (IOM).
The UN said its UN Children’s Fund, (UNICEF), also delivered over 300,000 liters of drinking water, enough for 20,000 people for two days. UNICEF also provided 300 hygiene kits and assisted 780 children with psychosocial support.
The UN said the World Food Programme (WFP) also distributed food, including rice, beans, and oil, which can feed 15,000 for a week.
According to the UN, between July 8 and 17, over 471 people were killed, injured, or unaccounted for.
Serious incidents of sexual violence against women and girls, as well as boys being recruited by gangs, have also been reported.
It said around 3,000 people have fled their homes, including hundreds of unaccompanied children, while at least 140 houses have been destroyed or burnt down.
UN Humanitarian Coordinator, Ulrika Richardson, has called on all parties to end the deadly violence and ensure an open humanitarian corridor to Cité Soleil.
“The UN is committed to continuing to deliver aid to the most vulnerable children, women and men in need, in line with the principles of humanity, neutrality, impartiality and independence,” Richardson said.
The UN said it is working with Haiti’s civil protection agency (DGPC), the Office for Citizen Protection (OPC), the Economic and Social Assistance Fund (FAES) and other local and government agencies, as well as other actors, to provide a more comprehensive response to the vulnerable communities.
The humanitarian coordinator called on all parties to remain committed to ending the deadly violence and ensure “an open humanitarian corridor to Cité Soleil to allow unhindered access to emergency humanitarian and medical assistance for all residents”.
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