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200 kidnappings only in May in Haiti , UN agency says

“Incidents of kidnapping for ransom have increased dramatically with some 200 cases in Port-au-Prince, recorded in May alone,”U.N. spokesman Stephane Dujarric said, citing data from the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Humanitarian Rights and the United Nations Integrated Office in Haiti.

At least 188 people have been killed and almost 17,000 people have been displaced from Port-au-Prince since April 24 by gangs, he said. He noted that among those killed were 96 suspected gang members.

Despite efforts by police to fight armed gangs, kidnappings have continued unabated and access to violence-affected neighborhoods remains limited, leading to alarmingly high malnutrition rates among children in some Port-au-Prince neighborhoods. The dire picture painted by the United Nations High Commissioner for Humanitarian Rights comes amid mounting concerns about the situation in Haiti, which is expected to be a focus of discussion among hemispheric leaders attending next week’s Summit of the Americas in Los Angeles. Hosted by the U.S., the event starts Monday June 6th and is expected to be attended by interim Prime Minister Ariel Henry.

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