With this purpose President Quiroga held meetings with United Nations representatives as well as with Members of the UN Security Council and of the Group of Friends of Haiti. Those encounters took place ahead of the Security Council discussion on the UN Secretary General report on Haiti on March 18th.
Club de Madrid endeavour has been reinforced with a letter sent on the 16th of March by its President and Vice Presidents, Vaira Vike-Freiberga (former President of Latvia), Jennifer Mary Shipley (former Prime Minister of New Zealand) and Jorge Quiroga to UN Peacekeeping Operations officials and Security Council representatives.
The letter also calls the Security Council to reconsider the downsizing by half of MINUSTAH’s military component. The message stresses the need « to consolidate institutional democracy as a precondition to country ownership and that ensuring the proper development of forthcoming elections is essential to this process » and also asks the international community to keep providing « the greatest possible security and logistics level to the upcoming Haitian elections and therefore postponing MINUSTAH downsizing until after the elections, so as to create an enabling environment for the most complex elections in Haiti’s recent history ».
Although « there is a pressing need for the country to reduce its dependence on foreign support », Club de Madrid thinks that the downsizing might « increase electoral irregularities in Haiti due to security deficits, thus casting doubt on electoral results, a traditional cause of instability in Haiti ». The letter also reminds that the planned downsizing accounts for only 1% of the total peacekeeping budget and 2,500 troops (2% of 120,000 peacekeeping troops).
The EU funded project “Promoting Dialogue for Democratic Reform in Haiti” has the following objectives:
- To identify multi-stakeholder areas for dialogue and negotiation so as to bring together the country’s key players and stimulate collective reflection on commonly identified democratic governance priorities.
- To accompany Haitian leaders in the management of immediate political challenges and support them in their search for solutions.
- To promote dialogue on medium and long-term democratic reforms through pragmatic agreements leading to political actions.