Tourism in the shadow of chaos – luxury cruise ships stop in Haiti despite the chaos in the capital | Foreign countries

Tourism in the shadow of chaos luxury cruise ships

Luxury ships arriving from Miami dock at the port of Labadee. Only employees of the Royal Caribbean company can access the controlled port area through careful checks.

The US is evacuating its citizens by helicopter to Miami due to gang violence in Haiti. At the same time, cruise ships leave Florida for the islands of the Caribbean Sea. One port is Labadee in Haiti, located about 200 kilometers from the capital, Port-au-Prince, which has drifted to the brink of anarchy.

The US State Department recommends avoiding travel to Haiti due to, among other things, the threat of kidnapping, poor health care and crime. The same four-level classification is given to Russia, Syria and Burkina Faso.

By comparison, a milder Tier 2 classification has been assigned to the Dominican Republic, located on the same island of Hispaniola. The Dominican Republic is also part of the cruise program of about two weeks at most.

For example, the Norwegian-American Royal Caribbean company operates in the Caribbean. For now, the cruises will continue. The security situation is constantly being monitored, the company’s press release said to the CNN channel earlier last month.

Security companies closely monitor the port area

The port of Labadee is an extension of all-inclusive ship vacations. During ship visits lasting a few hours, cruise customers can, if they wish, visit the artisan market or practice water sports or walk on the beach in a carefully demarcated area.

Destination ports vary depending on weather conditions. During March, Independence of the Seas, Oasis of the Seas, Symphony of the Seas and Odyssey of the Seas have visited Labadee. At least for now, Haiti is on the spring program, says Royal Caribbean on its website.

900 police officers, 11 million inhabitants

The services of private security companies are used because the number of poorly equipped police forces is insufficient. A force of 900 police officers can’t even bring order to the capital, let alone the rest of the country.

Violence seems to be spreading to new territories. A mob mugged two men to death near the town of Miralebais. The men had a large amount of money with them and residents thought they were buying weapons for gangs, reports news agency AFP.

Haiti has asked the international community, including Kenya, for help to stabilize the situation. So far no confirmations have been received. An estimated 4,000-5,000 law enforcement officers would be needed in Haiti

AFP, Reuters