International community increasingly concerned as gang leader 'Barbecue' pushes Haiti into crisis

The international community is increasingly concerned by the growing crisis in Haiti. 

Lawlessness is spiralling out of control in the Caribbean state, now overrun by ruthless gangs. 

Airports and police stations have been attacked, and thousands of prisoners released from jail. 

Fires rage on Haiti's streets, as gangs now run the capital - another catastrophe in which the US is trying to mediate. 

"A political crisis, escalating violence, unrest. This has created an untenable situation," White House national security communications advisor John Kirby said. 

Chronic instability has plagued Haiti for decades; with dictatorships and natural disasters. 

In 2010, the world watched in horror when 200,000 people died in a devastating earthquake. 

Gangs have long been a problem in the country but they have now formed an unlikely alliance. 

At the helm is one man - Jimmy Chérizier, known as "Barbecue". 

Gangs have shut the airport, looted the seaport and attacked police stations. 

It's believed more than 4000 prisoners have been released from jail onto the streets. 

The Prime Minister is in Puerto Rico and has agreed to step down when a transition plan is in place. 

Nearly 5000 people were killed in Haiti last year because of the worsening violence. 

The outgoing Prime Minister had negotiated for 1000 police officers from Kenya to come and help. 

Nearly 1 million of the country's 11 million people are on the brink of famine. 

"I'm ringing the alarm bell, because you have this baseline level of hunger and this is worsening things even more," said Jean-Martin Bauer, the UN World Food Programme country director for Haiti. 

The US has pledged hundreds of millions of dollars to support Haiti's security. 

But those dollars seem to be having little effect, especially on the streets of Port Au Prince.