AMERICA/HAITI - Missionaries heartbroken: armed gangs also attack churches and hospitals

Friday, 2 December 2022


Port Au Prince (Agenzia Fides) - "Every year something serious happens; this year, and the year is not over yet, there have been no earthquakes or cyclones but a unprecedented violence has hit the country, generating insecurity, fear, famine, hunger and despair and, so that nothing is missing, the cholera emergency has returned, killing mainly children". This is Fr Antonio Menegon, Camillian missionary, who is "heartbroken", due to the humanitarian disaster that has struck Haiti.
"Although no media is talking about it, it is a humanitarian catastrophe", he underlines. The armed gangs which govern the country are more and more aggressive and now manage everything. The prices of primary goods, such as food, fuel and medicines, have more than tripled; violent youth destroyed, looted and burned fuel depots as well as supermarkets, churches, Caritas food depots and other international humanitarian organizations. One hospital after another is closing for lack of diesel, electricity, food and medicine".
"Our hospital, Foyer Saint Camille in Port au Prince, - says Fr. Menegon, is still active but we don't know how long it will be able to resist; several times armed young men have entered and, up to now, they have not taken anything away but the fear is great. In this situation it is difficult to work and ensure assistance to the sick".
Missionaries and staff are not allowed to leave the hospital center for supplies or to return home, or they could be killed. "In addition to the 100 disabled children at the Foyer Bethléem and the sick at the Foyer Saint Camille, we no longer know where to house the pregnant women who are due to give birth and the babies who are born. We must provide for everyone's needs and also for the medical and nursing staff. More than 300 people live in the hospital and we must guarantee everyone meals, care and medicine. Despite everything, since the beginning of the year, we have built 40 houses and five schools in the southern part of the island destroyed by the earthquake of August 2021". (AM) (Agenzia Fides, 2/12/2022)