Marines are sent to Haiti to protect the embassy


U.S. Southern Command, which coordinates U.S. military activity in the region, said Wednesday that it had deployed a Marine Fleet-Anti-terrorism Security Team, or FAST, “to maintain strong security capabilities” at the embassy in Port-au-Prince and “conduct relief in place for our current Marines” at the request of the State Department.
AdvertisementDozens of FAST Marines based in Yorktown, Va., took part in the embassy deployment, a U.S. defense official said, speaking on the condition of anonymity to discuss a sensitive and ongoing mission.
Marines provide security at diplomatic missions worldwide, but the arrival of the specialized FAST Marines underscores the deteriorating situation within Haiti.
FAST platoons are on constant standby to respond to crises, with a mission to deploy within 24 hours to secure sensitive sites and defend U.S. personnel at risk.
FAST units are well situated to reinforce or evacuate embassies because they are familiar with embassy structures and already integrate with the State Department, according to Marine Corps service documents.
They also provide security for strategic weapons and rapid response to other units already deployed, including anti-terrorism operations, according to the Marine Corps.
AdvertisementHaiti, which has struggled for decades with corruption, poverty and violence, has descended into chaos since the still-unsolved 2021 assassination of President Jovenel Moïse.
Armed gangs control more than 80 percent of Port-au-Prince, U.N. officials have estimated, and gang members kidnap, rape and kill with impunity.
Share this article ShareThis month gangs attacked two prisons, freeing thousands of criminals, and assaulted the international airport, the main seaport and at least a dozen police stations.
Bodies have accumulated in the streets of the capital with no government workers to take them away.
The Haitian presidency remains vacant, and the last lawmakers’ terms expired in January 2023.
That has left Henry, who was appointed by Moïse days before his assassination, to run the government.
The 74-year-old neurosurgeon has drawn criticism for failing to control the violence or hold new elections.
AdvertisementThe prime minister was in Nairobi to rally support for a U.N.-approved, Kenya-led security force for Haiti when the violence recently intensified.
He has been unable to return.
He was last seen in Puerto Rico, a U.S. territory in the Caribbean.
The Biden administration spent nearly a year searching for a country to lead the Multinational Security Support mission to Haiti, and wrote the U.N. Security Council resolution that authorized it.
The United States will provide logistics, intelligence, airlift and medical support, and $300 million in funding, officials say, but won’t join in street patrols.
The State Department is vetting the Kenyan police units to be deployed to make sure they have not been involved in human rights violations.
“This week, the Department of Defense doubled our funding for the Multinational Security Support (MSS) mission, and we are working with Haitian, Kenyan, and other partners to expedite its deployment to support the Haitian National Police and to restore security in Haiti,” Southern Command said.
“The Department of Defense is postured to provide enabling support for the MSS, including planning assistance, information sharing, airlift, and medical support.”

U. S. The Southern Command, which manages U.S. s. military action in the area, informed the State Department on Wednesday that it had sent a Marine Fleet-Anti-terrorism Security Team, or FAST, to the embassy in Port-au-Prince “to maintain strong security capabilities” and “conduct relief in place for our current Marines.”.


Numerous FAST Marines from Yorktown, Va. participated in the deployment of the embassy, a U.S. s. said a defense official, who was speaking under anonymity to talk about a delicate and ongoing mission.

Marines guard diplomatic missions across the globe, but the fact that the specialized FAST Marines have arrived highlights how dire things are in Haiti. FAST platoons are always prepared to deploy in an emergency, with the goal of securing sensitive locations and defending U.S. s. employees in danger.

Based on their familiarity with embassy structures and their integration with the State Department, FAST units are in a good position to reinforce or evacuate embassies, according to documents from the Marine Corps.

According to the Marine Corps, they also offer security for strategic weapons and quick reaction to other units that have already been deployed, including counterterrorism operations.


Following the assassination of President Jovenel Moïse in 2021—whose murder is still unsolved—Haiti has been engulfed in chaos after decades of violence, poverty, and corruption. Over 80% of Port-au-Prince, United States, is under the control of armed gangs. N. According to estimates from officials, gang members are free to kill, rape, and kidnap people.

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At least a dozen police stations, the main seaport, the international airport, and two prisons were attacked by gangs this month, resulting in the release of thousands of criminals. Government employees are unable to remove the bodies that have accumulated in the capital’s streets.

The last lawmakers’ terms ended in January 2023, leaving the position of president of Haiti vacant. Henry, who was named president by Moïse just a few days before his murder, is now left in charge of the government. Due to his inability to stop the violence or call fresh elections, the 74-year-old neurosurgeon has come under fire.


The prime minister was in Nairobi to mobilize opposition to a U.S. N. -approved, security force headed by Kenya for Haiti when the violence lately escalated. He’s not been able to come back. His final sighting was in Puerto Rico, a U.S. s. region in the Caribbean.

A country to lead the Multinational Security Support mission to Haiti was sought after by the Biden administration for almost a year, and the U.S. Not N. resolution approved by the Security Council. According to officials, the US will contribute $300 million in funding, intelligence, airlift, medical support, and logistics; however, it will not participate in street patrols.

In order to ensure that the Kenyan police units being deployed have not engaged in human rights violations, the State Department is conducting background checks on them.

Southern Command stated, “This week, the Department of Defense doubled our funding for the Multinational Security Support (MSS) mission, and we are working with Haitian, Kenyan, and other partners to expedite its deployment to support the Haitian National Police and to restore security in Haiti.”. “The Department of Defense is in a position to offer the MSS enabling support, such as airlift, information sharing, planning assistance, and medical support. “.

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