Desperate for food and other necessities, some victims of Hurricane Matthew that battered Haiti a week ago looted UN trucks on Saturday (15 October) when UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon was on his visit to one of the hard-hit towns. The UN chief has promised more aid for the hurricane victims, who are also facing a cholera outbreak.
"We are going to mobilise as many resources and as much medical support as we can to first of all stop the cholera epidemic and second support the families of the victims," the UN Secretary-General said at a news conference. He also said that a new trustee fund would be set up to deal with the cholera outbreak.
The Category four hurricane that hit the Caribbean nation on 4 October killed nearly 1,000 people as 175,000 were made homeless. The damage caused to roads and communication lines is making it hard for relief supply to reach the needy, infuriating the victims, who have now resorted to violent means to fight hunger and illness.
The attack took place on a UN base in Les Cayes where the UN chief had arrived for a day's visit. The base was shut down following the looting incident, a coordinator for the American wing of the World Health Organization reportedly said.
"I firmly condemn all attacks against humanitarian convoys. Today I personally witnessed a WFP [World Food Program] truck being attacked," Reuters quoted the UN chief as saying following the incident.
"We understand the impatience and the anger of the population who are waiting for emergency relief. We are doing all we can to facilitate the arrival of the assistance soon as possible," he added.