LA VISITE NATIONAL PARK, Haiti — The police officers and other officials showed up in the mountain clearing on a cool morning armed with shotguns, pistols, sledgehammers and orders for hundreds of squatters to vacate the homes and farms they had carved out of one of Haiti's few national parks.
The people living there had known they could be removed at any time because they were on a rare piece of protected woodland in one of the most deforested countries on earth. But they were resolved to put up a fight. In a violent clash that lasted several hours, four squatters were shot to death.
Exactly what happened on July 23 is still in dispute, but the episode points to the difficulties facing President Michel Martelly as he tries to bring law and order to a chaotic country still recovering from a devastating 2010 earthquake and successive hurricanes and storms.
Martelly has made protecting the country's long-neglected natural environment one of his top four priorities.
- Amish country bristles at ‘Mafia’...
- For the first time in American history,...
- You'll never believe where your bottled water...
- Doug Robinson: When did Missouri turn into...
- Napa earthquake hastens calls for warning system
- Ebola has 'upper hand,' says US official
- Ask Mr. Dad: Handling a child’s...
- Miley Cyrus about VMA success: 'I'm in...
- For the first time in American history,... 24
- Obama faces tough options in Iraq and... 23
- Obama administration announces new... 19
- Rev. Al Sharpton plays prominent role... 15
- Doug Robinson: When did Missouri turn... 15
- Huckabee: 'Stop the fight' over Common... 14
- Obama back at White House after summer... 14
- Mourners gather in St. Louis for Brown... 13