Three Assailants Killed In Haiti Bank Attack, Employee Says

(AFP) — Security forces in troubled Haiti killed at least three people Monday as they repelled an attack on the central bank in capital Port-au-Prince, an employee told AFP.

The Bank of the Republic of Haiti (BRH) is one of the few key institutions still operating in the city’s business district, which has been overrun by armed gangs for the past three weeks.

On Monday, a “group of criminals” attacked its building but were driven back by the bank’s security guards as well as police and armed forces, according to a bank employee.

The employee, who requested anonymity, said three or four criminals had been killed, adding that a bank security guard was also injured after being shot.

Writing on X, previously Twitter, the bank said Tuesday: “Following an incident yesterday near the site of the BRH on Rue Pavee, security forces and the bank’s security team acted with professionalism and efficiency.”

The bank also wrote it was “deeply grateful” to its security guards and the police for “their vigilance and constant commitment to protecting our community.”

Haiti has been rocked by an uptick in gang violence since late February when armed groups raided a prison in the country, releasing thousands of inmates, as they demanded Prime Minister Ariel Henry resign.

Last week Henry agreed to step aside to allow the formation of an interim government, following pressure from neighbouring Caribbean countries and the United States.

UNICEF, the United Nations’ children’s agency, offered a bleak assessment of the situation in Haiti, saying Sunday it was “almost like a scene out of ‘Mad Max,’” and warning people were suffering “famine and malnutrition” with aid groups unable to gain access.

That same day, a curfew was extended until Wednesday in the Ouest department, which includes Port-au-Prince. A state of emergency is set to end April 3.

The US and European Union member states are among the countries which have evacuated diplomatic personnel from Haiti due to the crisis.

Meanwhile, efforts are continuing to organise Nairobi’s security mission to back up Haiti’s overwhelmed police force.