HAITI: RETURN OF A DUVALIER DESPOT
A call by the IJDH (Institute for Justice & Democracy in Haiti) to have Baby Doc Duvalier arrested in Haiti. Please contact the IJDH to find out how to support their efforts to have Baby Doc Duvalier arrested.
DEEPLY ENTRENCHED IMPUNITY IN HAITI MUST BE CHALLENGED & ENDED
(Commentary by Grahame Russell, email@example.com)
Up until 1986, Haiti was controlled and abused by the U.S., French & western-backed Duvalier family regime, headed by Papa Doc, then Baby Doc.
In 1986, Baby Doc fled to France, with hundreds of millions of stolen dollars, fleeing a popular Haitian uprising, that resulted in the democratic election of Jean Bertrand Aristide as president in 1990.
This should have been the water-shed year in Haiti's long history of internal and international oppression and intervention.
In 1991, the US (under "Papa" President Bush) and France backed a military coup that ousted the government of Haiti, forcing president Aristide into exile. There followed 3 years of brutal repression against the popular movement.
In 2000, the Haitian people again elected a government headed by president Aristide.
In 2004, the US (under "Baby" President Bush), France and Canada back a coup that again ousted the government of Haiti, forcing Aristide into exile. There followed more years of brutal repression against the popular movement.
In 2010, Haiti was struck by a massive earthquake that killed some 315,000 people out right, and left hundreds of thousands more homeless.
After the earthquake, Presidents Bush and Clinton paraded through Haiti, there purportedly to help Haiti's poor. Now, Baby Doc Duvalier has returned to Haiti, parading around. Still, Aristide is not allowed back into Haiti.
If real democratic elections were held in Haiti, it is most likely the people would re-elect Aristide again, hands down, and/or the leader of the Lavalas party, that was co-founded by Aristide in the late 1980s, after Baby Doc Duvalier was forced to flee the country he had ruled and ruined.
Though it is not surprising, it is outrageous and deeply sick that US presidents, that supported coups directly and indirectly in Haiti, and Baby Doc can walk freely in the streets of Haiti, a country they together have helped keep in ruin, while Aristide is forced to stay away.
The complicit "international community" and Haitian elites (including Duvalier) are afraid of one main thing in Haiti - democracy. And Haiti cannot and will not be properly rebuilt, from the bottom up, inclusively by and for all Haitians, without real democracy.
BELOW: a call by the IJDH (Institute for Justice & Democracy in Haiti) to have Baby Doc Duvalier arrested in Haiti. Please contact the IJDH to find out how to support their efforts to have Baby Doc Duvalier arrested.
* * * * * * *
January 17, 201
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
- Mario Joseph, Av., Bureau des Avocats Internationaux (Port-au-Prince, Haiti), firstname.lastname@example.org, 011-509-3701-9879
- Brian Concannon Jr., Esq., Institute for Justice & Democracy in Haiti (Boston, MA), email@example.com, 1-541-263-0029
- Ira Kurzban, Esq. IJDH Board Chair and attorney in Jean-Juste v. Duvalier, (Miami, FL) firstname.lastname@example.org, 1-305-444-0060
HUMAN RIGHTS GROUPS CALL FOR IMMEDIATE ARREST OF JEAN-CLAUDE DUVALIER
January 17, 2011- Port-au-Prince and Boston- Today, the Institute for Justice & Democracy in Haiti (IJDH) and the Bureau des Avocats Internationaux (BAI) call on the Government of the Republic of Haiti to comply with Haitian law and arrest ex-President Jean-Claude Duvalier, who returned to Haiti on a commercial flight yesterday.
IJDH and the BAI note that the extensive legal documentation of Mr. Duvalier's crimes includes:
A July 3, 2009 order from the First Court of Public Law, of the Federal Court of Switzerland, which notes that the Haitian government had informed it of current criminal proceedings against Mr. Duvalier as late as June 2008;
The Decision of the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Florida, Jean-Juste v. Duvalier, No. 86-0459, dated January 8, 1988, finding Mr. Duvalier liable for over $500,000,000 for his misappropriation of public monies for his personal use; and
An extensive accounting of Mr. Duvalier's misappropriation of public funds conducted for the Haitian government by a U.S. accounting firm between 1986 and 1990, establishing the theft of over $300,000,000 U.S.D. of public funds.
This legal documentation is supplemented by an extensive public record of Mr. Duvalier's human rights violations, including the torture and disappearances of political dissidents at the Fort Dimanche prison and other crimes committed by organizations under his control, including the Armed Forces of Haiti and the Volunteers for National Security (Tontons Macoutes).
Mr. Duvalier is not protected against prosecution by any statutes of limitations. According to Article 466 of the Haitian Code of Criminal Procedure, the proceedings for misappropriation of funds are not proscribed because of the continuing prosecution of the case from 1986 to 2008. The political killings and torture are not proscribed because they are crimes against humanity, which are imprescriptible under international law.
The BAI and IJDH believe that if there are not any arrest warrants outstanding against Mr. Duvalier, that the information available in existing legal proceedings and Mr. Duvalier's 25-year flight from Haitian justice clearly justify the immediate issuance and execution of an arrest warrant. The BAI and IJDH offer their assistance, including their extensive documentation of Mr. Duvalier's crimes, to Haitian authorities conducting a serious investigation.
# # # # # # #
# # # # # # #
- Please re-publish and re-post this article, citing author and source
- Donate to support: victim and survivor, founded human rights organizations, and indigenous and campesino organizations.
- Create your own email and mail lists and re-distribute our information.
For indigenous and campesino organizations working for community-controlled development, environmental justice, human rights & justice in Guatemala & Honduras, make check payable to "Rights Action" and mail to:
UNITED STATES: Box 50887, Washington DC, 20091-0887
CANADA: 552 - 351 Queen St. E, Toronto ON, M5A-1T8