Heavily armed men attacked without causing casualties a hospital in Haiti on the night of Monday 25 to Tuesday 26 September, said one of the managers of the establishment, a new illustration of the widespread violence suffered by this Caribbean country.
The attackers took over the perimeter of the hospital in Mirebalais, one of the largest hospitals in the country, from midnight to 5 a.m. and fired on facilities, Dr. Reginald Ternier told AFP by telephone.
This morning, bullet holes were observed on the facades of several buildings" of the hospital, located just over 50 km from the capital Port-au-Prince, while "the intensive care unit for newborns is affected," he said, adding that large caliber shell casings had been found.
Trauma and property damage
No deaths or gunshot wounds were reported after the attack, but Régiald Ternier evokes trauma and material damage. "Patients, residents and staff all experienced the attack in the middle of the night. They are in shock," he lamented, calling the attack incomprehensible. "It is difficult for us to understand the motives for such an attack. We receive patients of all kinds, regardless of their social rank, affiliation or activities," he said.
Before the assault on the hospital, assailants with automatic weapons had carried out an attack Friday on Saut d'Eau, a village not far from Mirebalais. Interviewed Sunday on Magik 9 radio, the mayor of Saut d'Eau Marie Andrée Ruth Thelus reported at least 11 dead, dozens injured and several houses burned.
A country ravaged by gang violence
On Monday, Saut d'Eau was the target of a new attack without further details on the potential number of casualties emerging. Haiti, a poor country in the Caribbean, is ravaged by the violence of gangs that reign terror, with more than 2400 dead since the beginning of the year according to UN figures.
For nearly a year, Haitian Prime Minister Ariel Henry and UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres have been calling for an international force to help police overwhelmed by the violence. The United States announced Friday that several countries are committed to contributing under Kenya's leadership to the force, but its establishment is likely to take a few more months, let alone its actual deployment.