An amendment to a Foreign Operations spending bill that would provide up to $3 million to disarm former military and armed gangs in Haiti passed the Senate. The provision, co-sponsored by Sen. Bill Nelson (D-Fla.), requires the secretary of state to submit a report to Congress on plans for holding free, fair elections and stabilizing the Caribbean nation before the funding is made available.
The broader bill, which was approved in a 98 to 1 vote, includes over $116 million in assistance to Haiti for a wide range of programs aimed at economic development, improving heath care, judicial and police reform, increasing security, holding elections and combating drug trafficking.
On page 259, at the end of the page add the following new
c ) Funds made available for assistance for Haiti shall be
made available to support elections in Haiti after the Secretary
of State submits a written report to the Committees on
Appropriations, the House International Relations Committee and
the Senate Foreign Relations Committee setting forth a detailed
plan, in consultation with the Haitian Transitional Government
and the United Nations Stabilization Mission (MINUSTAH) , which
includes an integrated public security strategy to strengthen the
rule of law, ensure that acceptable security conditions exist to
permit an electoral process with broad-based participation by all
the political parties, and provide a timetable for the
demobilization, disarmament and reintegration of armed groups:
Provided, That following the receipt of such report, up to
$3,000,000 of the funds made available under subsection (a) (3)
should be made available for the demobilization, disarmanent, and
reintegration of armed groups in Haiti.