US secretary of state in Jamaica for Haiti talks with C’bean leaders Loop Jamaica

The content originally appeared on: Jamaica News Loop News

US Secretary of State Antony Blinken is scheduled to meet Monday with Caribbean leaders in Jamaica as part of an urgent push to solve Haiti’s spiralling crisis, while pressure grows on Prime Minister Ariel Henry to resign or agree to a transitional council.

Henry is expected to attend the closed-door meeting organised by members of the regional trade bloc Caricom, who for months have pressed for a transitional government in Haiti as violent protests demanded Henry’s resignation.

“Whilst we are making considerable progress, the stakeholders are not yet where they need to be,” Caricom said in a statement Friday, announcing the urgent meeting in Jamaica.

Ariel Henry, prime minister of Haiti

Attacks by powerful gangs on key government targets began February 29 across Haiti’s capital of Port-au-Prince.

Gunmen have burned police stations, closed the main international airports and raided the country’s two biggest prisons, releasing more than 4,000 inmates.

Scores of people have been killed, and more than 15,000 people are homeless after fleeing neighbourhoods raided by gangs. Food and water are dwindling as stands and stores selling to impoverished Haitians run out of goods. The main port in Port-au-Prince remains closed, stranding dozens of containers with critical supplies.

Henry remains locked out of his country, landing in Puerto Rico last week after being denied entry into the Dominican Republic, which shares the island of Hispaniola with Haiti.

When the attacks began, Henry was in Kenya pushing for the UN-backed deployment of a police force from the East African country that has been delayed by a court ruling.

A growing number of people are demanding the resignation of Henry, who has not issued any public comment since the attacks began.