Gianluca Costantini
Political Comics

Jimmy “Barbeque” Cherizier

Who is the Haitian gang leader “Barbeque”?

Just another thug or a serious threat to a nation?

Barbeque’s real name is Jimmy Cherizier, the name “Barbeque” was coined during childhood, because his mother ran a fried chicken stand. Cherzier was a member of an elite police unit called Unité Départementale pour le Maintien de l’Ordre (UDMO, “Unit for the Maintenance of Order”). The unit was responsible for crowd control and is known for committing multiple human rights violations. He is thought to have participated in/led multiple massacres including the 2018 #LaSaline massacre in which 71 people were killed and hundreds of homes burned. In 2018 he was expelled from the police force. In 2020 Cherzier made a major power play by announcing the “G9 Family and Allies,” which was the unification of several armed gangs, was starting a revolution in the violence stricken nation. Cherizier was sanctioned by the US in 2020 and by the @UN in 2022 for human rights abuses. In early March he pressured the Prime minister of Haiti, Ariel Henry @DrArielHenry, to step down by threatening that “the country is headed straight to a genocide” if Henry didn’t resign. Henry will fully step down once a transitional presidential council has chosen an interim leader as his replacement. It is unclear what role “Barbeque” will play in Haiti’s future but he is sure to be a major player as he still holds significant influence. His significant quantities of weapons, as the @washingtonpost says “could give him “effective veto power” over the proposed transitional presidential council and elections.” This certainly will not be the last time we hear the name “Barbeque” as armed gangs will continue to play a major role in the country.


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