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#1016: Haiti asks for a new U.N. mission (fwd)


Haiti asks for a new U.N. mission  02:57 p.m Nov 19, 1999 Eastern 

PORT-AU-PRINCE, Haiti, Nov 19 (Reuters) - Haiti's government has asked
for the creation of a new, unarmed  United Nations mission to replace
the police and human rights  missions whose terms expire shortly,
Haitian officials said on Friday.   The two U.N. missions in Haiti date
from a 1994 U.S.-led  invasion of 20,000 troops to Haiti to return
former President Jean Bertrand Aristide to power. Aristide was ousted in
a military coup in 1991. The mandate of the U.N. police mission, made up
of 143international officers and 138 Argentine security officials, is  
scheduled to end Nov. 30.  Haiti's fledgling 6,000-member national
police force was formed   in 1995 and still requires training, officials
said. The U.N. International Civilian mission, which monitors human
rights in Haiti, is expected to end Dec. 30.The proposed replacement
mission would be comprised of technical experts, and would not be an
armed force, Haiti's president,Rene Preval, said on Wednesday. ``All the
past missions which were approved by the Security Council were armed and
with uniform,'' Preval said. ``We think the police still needs training.
So there is going to be  technical assistance for the police, but this
time without arms or uniforms,'' he said.  U.S. special assistant to
President Bill Clinton, Arturo  Valenzuela, was in Haiti this week, ``We
are pleased that the Government of Haiti has requested the creation of a
new United Nations Mission,'' Valenzuela said.      ``We commend MIPONUH
and MICIVIH (the existing missions) and anticipate a smooth transition
between the old and  new U.N. missions.''