Tags: UN | US | quake.leasdership

U.N., U.S. Bicker Over Quake Aid Leadership

Thursday, 14 Jan 2010 10:11 PM

The U.S. marines are about to hit the shores of Port-au-Prince – an arrival that would almost certainly send shivers up spines anywhere else in Latin America.

But amid the Haitian earthquake relief effort – in a country that has no military of its own and has hosted an international peacekeeping force since 2004 – the arrival is unlikely to cause many ripples among locals.

Yet the dispatch of some 2,200 marines – as well as 3,500 soldiers from the 82nd Airborne Division – is raising some command and assignment questions.

When the troops arrive, perhaps this weekend, who will be in charge, given that the Haitian government is almost disintegrated and the 9,000-strong UN peacekeeping force, MINUSTAH, is dealing with its own losses?

Will the 5,500 US military personnel be part of an international, or an American, security effort?
Who's the boss?

“It’s fully desirable that all these forces should be coordinated with the UN MINUSTAH commander there,” UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon said Thursday.

US officials, on the other hand, say that while the US may “coordinate” with the peacekeeping operation’s leadership, US troops will be under American command.

“We’ll be under US command supporting a UN mission on behalf of the Haitian government and the Haitian people,” said State Department spokesman Philip Crowley, when asked Thursday to clarify the command structure for what is expected to be a three-month deployment of US forces.

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The U.S. marines are about to hit the shores of Port-au-Prince – an arrival that would almost certainly send shivers up spines anywhere else in Latin America.
UN,US,quake.leasdership
246
2010-11-14
Thursday, 14 Jan 2010 10:11 PM
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