Haiti cholera victims vow to fight on for UN compensation
Published 23/02/2013 | 04:00
Thousands of Haitian victims of a cholera epidemic widely believed to have been caused by United Nations peacekeepers vowed to continue their fight to hold the UN to account after it rejected their claims for compensation, citing diplomatic immunity.
More than 8,000 Haitians have died from the epidemic and 500,000 people, some 5pc of the population, have fallen sick since the disease entered the impoverished Caribbean nation's water system in October 2010.
The claims were filed on behalf of 5,000 victims in 2011 by the Institute for Justice and Democracy in Haiti, a Boston-based human rights group. In its response to the claims, published this week, the UN said "the claims are not receivable, pursuant to Section 29 of the Privileges and Immunities of the United Nations".
Although Haiti has suffered from disasters and epidemics of many varieties, it had been spared cholera for more than 200 years until the arrival of Nepalese peacekeepers in the Mirebalais region, north of Port-au-Prince, in 2010. (© Independent News Service)