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14901: Lemieux: NYTimes:Reuters:Haitian Radio Station to Close-Threats (fwd)
From: JD Lemieux <email@example.com>
February 22, 2003
Haitian Radio Station to Close After Renewed Threats to
PORT-AU-PRINCE, Haiti, Feb. 21 — Almost three years after
her husband was killed, the journalist who runs one of
Haiti's most popular radio stations said today that the
station was going off the air because of threats against
"We will shut down tomorrow because we have been subject to
constant threats," Michèle Montas said in a statement read
on the air on her station, Radio Haiti Inter, this morning.
"We have lost three lives — Jean Dominique, Jean-Claude
Louissaint and Maxime Seide — and we refuse to lose another
Mr. Dominique, who was Ms. Montas's husband and one of
Haiti's most well-known journalists, was shot to death as
he arrived at the radio station along with Mr. Louissaint,
the station's caretaker, on April 3, 2000. Mr. Seide, Ms.
Montas's bodyguard, was killed when armed men attacked her
home on Christmas Day.
"We don't know exactly when we will go back on the air,"
Ms. Montas said. "But we will not take exile for a third
time, because we have only freedom of expression as a
Radio Haiti Inter mixes political commentary and
investigative reporting in its programming, and was one of
the first stations to broadcast in the Creole language of
Haiti rather than in French.
Mr. Dominique and Ms. Montas were forced to flee Haiti
twice as a result of attacks on Radio Haiti Inter, once
during the dictatorship of Jean-Claude Duvalier in 1980 and
again under the military government that ruled Haiti in the
Earlier this week, another station, Radio Métropole,
stopped broadcasting news for 24 hours to protest attacks
against its journalists by supporters of President
Jean-Bertrand Aristide, who became Haiti's first freely
elected president in 1991 and began his second term in
The investigation into the killing of Mr. Dominique has
become an emotional flash point in this impoverished
Caribbean nation of eight million. Three judges
investigating the case have quit, saying they have been
subjected to threats, pressure and obstruction from people
close to the government of Mr. Aristide.
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