Cuba crisis puts Haiti on back burner

THE US is delaying plans for an invasion of Haiti because of the crisis over Cuban boat people.

Senior US officials meet Caribbean leaders in Jamaica today to discuss their contributions to a 15,000-strong largely American invasion force. But an invasion to displace the military government of Lieutenant-General Raoul Cedras will not now take place until the crisis in Cuba has ended, which may not be until after November's congressional elections.

'No one ought to assume that there's been any decline in the urgency of dealing with the situation,' said a White House spokesman. 'A timetable has been set, but I can assure you that we are moving to increase the pressure.'

The administration still hopes that the threat of an invasion and tight economic sanctions will force the Haitian military to leave power voluntarily. But the willingness of the White House to further delay its plans to restore the exiled President, Jean-Bertrand Aristide, may convince General Cedras that the threat is empty.

In Port-au-Prince paramilitary gunmen, suspected of working for the government, killed a well- known priest loyal to Fr Aristide. Jean-Marie Vincent was ambushed at his house by gunmen.

Despite Washington's visible reluctance to invade, President Bill Clinton may find he has no alternative policy. Ian Martin of the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace, who formerly headed the human rights monitors in Haiti, said: 'I'm inclined to think that the administration cannot back away from an invasion without admitting total failure. I still think that Clinton will find himself on the brink between invasion and humiliation.'

The Deputy Secretary of State, Strobe Talbot, who has advocated swift action in Haiti, heads the US meeting with Caribbean foreign and defence ministers in Jamaica today. The Caribbean officials are expected to back an invasion and contribute 200 troops as a symbol of their support.

Although the US is militarily prepared for an invasion - two warships with 1,800 troops on board are off Port-au-Prince - the UN has been less successful in getting foreign governments to join a peace-keeping force to be installed after the invasion. Out of more than 40 countries approached only 10 have promised to send forces totalling 2,000 men out of a proposed 6,000-strong UN force.

OTTAWA - Canada believes the US should lift its embargo on Cuba and allow for political change to come about internally, Canadian officials said yesterday, Reuter reports.

Ottawa, which never agreed to US pressure to break with Cuba, wants to see internal reform turn Cuba into a social democracy, preserving health and education polices adopted since the revolution.

(Photograph omitted)

Start your day with The Independent, sign up for daily news emails
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
News
ebookA unique anthology of reporting and analysis of a crucial period of history
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Ashdown Group: UI Developer - (UI, HTML, CSS, JavaScript, AngularJS)

£25000 - £40000 per annum: Ashdown Group: UI Developer - (UI, JavaScript, HTML...

Ashdown Group: Graduate UI Developer - HTML, CSS, Javascript

£25000 - £30000 per annum: Ashdown Group: Graduate UI Application Developer - ...

Ashdown Group: B2B Marketing Manager - Events, Digital, Offline

£45000 - £50000 per annum: Ashdown Group: B2B Marketing Manager (Events, Digit...

Guru Careers: Senior Account Manager / SAM

£30 - 35k: Guru Careers: A Senior Account Manager / SAM is needed to join the ...

Day In a Page

Is a quiet crusade to reform executive pay bearing fruit?

Is a quiet crusade to reform executive pay bearing fruit?

Dominic Rossi of Fidelity says his pressure on business to control rewards is working. But why aren’t other fund managers helping?
The King David Hotel gives precious work to Palestinians - unless peace talks are on

King David Hotel: Palestinians not included

The King David is special to Jerusalem. Nick Kochan checked in and discovered it has some special arrangements, too
More people moving from Australia to New Zealand than in the other direction for first time in 24 years

End of the Aussie brain drain

More people moving from Australia to New Zealand than in the other direction for first time in 24 years
Meditation is touted as a cure for mental instability but can it actually be bad for you?

Can meditation be bad for you?

Researching a mass murder, Dr Miguel Farias discovered that, far from bringing inner peace, meditation can leave devotees in pieces
Eurovision 2015: Australians will be cheering on their first-ever entrant this Saturday

Australia's first-ever Eurovision entrant

Australia, a nation of kitsch-worshippers, has always loved the Eurovision Song Contest. Maggie Alderson says it'll fit in fine
Letterman's final Late Show: Laughter, but no tears, as David takes his bow after 33 years

Laughter, but no tears, as Letterman takes his bow after 33 years

Veteran talkshow host steps down to plaudits from four presidents
Ivor Novello Awards 2015: Hozier wins with anti-Catholic song 'Take Me To Church' as John Whittingdale leads praise for Black Sabbath

Hozier's 'blasphemous' song takes Novello award

Singer joins Ed Sheeran and Clean Bandit in celebration of the best in British and Irish music
Tequila gold rush: The spirit has gone from a cheap shot to a multi-billion pound product

Join the tequila gold rush

The spirit has gone from a cheap shot to a multi-billion pound product
12 best statement wallpapers

12 best statement wallpapers

Make an impact and transform a room with a conversation-starting pattern
Paul Scholes column: Does David De Gea really want to leave Manchester United to fight it out for the No 1 spot at Real Madrid?

Paul Scholes column

Does David De Gea really want to leave Manchester United to fight it out for the No 1 spot at Real Madrid?
Season's finale brings the end of an era for top coaches and players across the continent

The end of an era across the continent

It's time to say farewell to Klopp, Clement, Casillas and Xavi this weekend as they move on to pastures new, reports Pete Jenson
Bin Laden documents released: Papers reveal his obsession with attacking the US and how his failure to keep up with modern jihad led to Isis

'Focus on killing American people'

Released Bin Laden documents reveal obsession with attacking United States
Life hacks: The innovations of volunteers and medical workers are helping Medécins Sans Frontières save people around the world

Medécins Sans Frontières's life hacks

The innovations of volunteers and medical workers around the world are helping the charity save people
Ireland's same-sex marriage vote: As date looms, the Irish ask - how would God vote?

Same-sex marriage

As date looms, the Irish ask - how would God vote?
The underworld is going freelance: Why The Godfather's Mafia model is no longer viable

The Mafia is going freelance

Why the underworld model depicted in The Godfather is no longer viable