Just wanted to write a quick note to let you all know that there has been some political unrest here in Haiti this week. Protests against inflation, the high cost of goods and lack of food were scheduled for yesterday, Monday, all over the country. Unfortunately, in many areas, the protests became violent and began even over the weekend. The town of Aux Cayes (which is the area I used to work in) was particularly affected, with several injuries and some reported deaths. Roadblocks were set up and traffic was unable to pass through town to come out here to Jeremie.
Yesterday there were several protests in Jeremie and all the businesses were closed. There was some violence reported and several roadblocks were set up with burning tires and burning cars. We didn’t leave home because we knew there would be demonstrations. But, this morning, we packed up our supplies and meds as usual and went on into town, expecting to go up to Gatineau to hold clinic. When we got to town we were told that there were large roadblocks set up on the road we have to take to get out of town and people were throwing rocks and bottles at motorcycles and vehicles. Several buses tried to get through and had to turn back. The police and many of our friends recommended that we not try to venture out. There were a number of random attacks going on in town and down at the wharf yesterday and today. So, we had to cancel clinic, which we felt very bad about, since there were many patients waiting for us.
We’ve been told that the demonstrations may last all week, and most of the schools are closed at least until Friday. So, we’re not sure if we’ll get through to go to clinic on Thursday. In any case, we will try not to take unnecessary chances, since anti-American feelings run high during times of unrest here.
I will try to keep you informed of any other developments. Appreciate your prayers.