Following last month’s historic earthquake, Haiti remains in a state of physical and political devastation. The earthquake destroyed the Haitian Parliament and Presidential Palace, killing members of Haiti’s Cabinet and leaving the government in disarray. With Haiti’s government and infrastructure in a severely weakened state, many in the international community are debating how best to support the Haitian government and people at this time. Some have called for the creation of a U.N. protectorate for Haiti to provide the fragile nation with stability and leadership as the country recovers and rebuilds. Others strongly reject this option, viewing it as a threat to Haiti’s autonomy.
On February 17, Brookings hosted a discussion on the future of Haiti, focusing on critical issues of governance and independence. Panelists included Senior Fellows Mauricio Cardenas, director of the Latin America Initiative; Elizabeth Ferris, co-director of the Brookings-Bern Project on Internal Displacement; and Jean-Marie Guehenno, former U.N. under-secretary general for peacekeeping operations. Senior Fellow Kevin Casas-Zamora, a former vice president of Costa Rica, moderated the discussion.
After the program, panelists took audience questions.