- Twenty armed men have violently entered the Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF) hospital in Tabarre, Haiti, and forcibly removed a patient with gunshot wounds.
- We strongly condemn the incursion, during which our staff were threatened, and call on all parties to the conflict in Port-au-Prince to respect medical facilities.
- All MSF activities at the Tabarre hospital are currently suspended due to this incident.
Port-au-Prince – Last night, approximately 20 armed men violently entered the Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF) hospital in Tabarre, in the Haitian capital Port-au-Prince, to forcibly remove a patient with gunshot wounds who was still in the operating room.
We strongly condemn this incursion, which demonstrates once again the unprecedented level of violence currently raging in Port-au-Prince. All trauma and burn care activities at the Tabarre hospital are currently suspended due to this incident.
On the evening of 6 July, a patient with gunshot wounds came directly to the hospital, where he was quickly admitted due to the seriousness of his injuries. While he was still in the operating room, two men arrived at the hospital, feigning a life-threatening emergency.
While the hospital gate was opened, some 20 masked gunmen stormed in to seize the wounded patient, whom they then took with them.
We must first understand what has happened and give our abused medical staff some respite, because these men threatened to kill them.Mahaman Bachard Iro, MSF's head of programmes in Haiti
“There is such contempt for human life among the conflicting parties, and such violence in Port-au-Prince, that even the vulnerable, sick and wounded are not spared,” says Mahaman Bachard Iro, MSF's head of programmes in Haiti. “How are we supposed to be able to continue providing care in this environment?
“We must first understand what has happened and give our abused medical staff some respite, because these men threatened to kill them. To this end, we have decided to suspend our activities for the time being, in order to assess the conditions for a potential resumption,” says Iro.
A series of security incidents affecting our medical teams continues to call into question our presence and operations. Our medical staff, who fight daily to save lives, are shocked by this violence and the contempt shown by these armed groups towards them.
Elsewhere in the Port-au-Prince metropolitan area, we had to temporarily close the Drouillard hospital in April 2022, permanently close the doors of our emergency centre in Martissant in June 2021, and suspend our support for the Raoul Pierre Louis hospital in Carrefour in January 2023 for security reasons.
We remain determined to stand by the Haitian people, who are the primary victims of the serious deterioration in the country’s security situation in recent years. Apart from the Tabarre hospital, we will continue our other medical programmes in Haiti.
In 2022, our teams in Haiti, in collaboration with the ministry of health, carried out more than 4,600 surgeries, 34,200 emergency consultations and 17,800 mobile clinic consultations, treated 2,600 people with gunshot wounds, 370 people with burns and 2,300 people for sexual violence, and provided care during 700 births.