CASTRIES, St. Lucia--Prime Minister (PM) of St. Kitts and Nevis, Dr. Timothy Harris is calling for dialogue to begin as soon as possible, to arrive at a solution to the continuing violence in Haiti.

  “Colleagues, the deteriorating situation in our Member State Haiti is of great concern,” Harris said on Wednesday, July 3, during his remarks as outgoing Chairman of the Caribbean Community CARICOM at the opening ceremony of the 40th Regular Meeting of the Conference of CARICOM Heads of Government.

  The meeting is taking place in St. Lucia this week under the chairmanship of St. Lucia Prime Minister Allen Chastanet.

  “The continuing violence causing loss of life and property must cease, and dialogue must begin in order to arrive at a solution to this cycle of instability,” CARICOM’s outgoing Chairman also said.

  Harris added that the Haitian people deserve to go about their daily lives in a calm and peaceful environment. “I reiterate the Community’s call for all parties to act responsibly and in the interest of the country. We stand ready to offer the good offices of the Community to bring a resolution to this crisis,” the outgoing Chairman added.

  Violent protests and unrest broke out in Haiti on February 7, the second anniversary of President Jovenel Moïse’s election. Demonstrators are demanding the removal of the Haitian president over allegations of corruption and embezzlement, which he denies.

  On June 24, the United Nations Security Council approved a resolution to create a UN “Integrated Office” in Haiti with the mandate of helping to strengthen political stability and good governance. On October 16, the Integrated Office will replace the UN peacekeeping mission in Haiti, which has had a presence there for 15 years.

  The United Nations General Assembly elected St. Vincent and the Grenadines, a CARICOM Member State, as one of five new non-permanent members to the Security Council – the UN’s most powerful body – on June 7. As a new Council member, St. Vincent and the Grenadines will take its seat on January 1, 2020.

  Secretary-General of the United Nations, António Manuel Guterres is a special guest at the opening ceremony of the 40th Regular Meeting of the Conference of CARICOM Heads of Government.