News

Haiti: Mariano Fernandez Ends Term as Head of UN Peacekeeping Mission

By: Caribbean Journal Staff - February 1, 2013

Above: Former MINUSTAH Chief Mariano Fernandez

By Alexander Britell

Mariano Fernandez, MINUSTAH Chief and Special Representative of Secretary General Ban Ki-moon in Haiti, officially ended his 20 month term as head of the UN’s MINUSTAH peacekeeping mission in Haiti Thursday.

Fernandez, a native of Chile, gave his final briefing to the Security Council this week, following a call to Haitian leaders to organize legislative elections in the country “as soon as possible.”

A spokesperson for the Office of the Secretary General told Caribbean Journal that no successor for Fernandez had yet been announced.

Fernandez had made improving Haiti’s security institutions a priority while serving as MINUSTAH chief.

In a Q&A-style UN release at the end of his term, Fernandez said that the most difficult challenge in Haiti was for Haitians to “reach a political agreement and to have a much more stable democracy.”

“Elections have been delayed for 14 months, and at the time that I leave the country, there is still on [Permanent] Electoral Council,” he said. “The Haitian political, economic and social elite need to agree to advance the country in a direction that is not so hard to find, because the country has great potential.”

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