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28870: Sprague (Reply) Reply to RSF News Editor Jean-Francois (fwd)

From: Jebsprague@mac.com

Reply to RSF:
I want to respond to the email from RSF News Editor Jean-Francois Julliard.  The IRI and RSF have continually denied the funding BUT Jim Brown, former FOIA officer at the NED, has admitted that the grants exist.   Another employee of the NED along with documents (via FOIA request) from the NED also confirm that NED grants to the IRI include RSF funding.  This is the tangled web of grantees and sub-grantees.  These are IRI 2002-022/7270, IRI 2003-027/7470 and IRI 2004-035/7473.

I would like to suggest that RSF talk with the family members of Abdias Jean and the witnesses to his murder. I have a documented conversation with RSF's Haiti desk officer admitting that RSF has not only failed to interview the family of Abdias Jean but has also failed to contact/interview the witnesses to his murder.   Meanwhile the police (under Latortue) have admitted to carrying out the killing.  The RSF has still not said a word about the killing of Abdias.

Other press freedom organizations, such as UNESCO, have spoken out. UNESCO Director-General Koïchiro Matsuura stated, ?I strongly condemn the killing of Abdias Jean who appears to have been shot dead for carrying out his professional duty to inform the public? and on January 21, 2005 the Inter American Press Association wrote a letter to Interim Prime Minister Gerald Latortue stating, ?On behalf of the 1,300 newspaper members of the Inter American Press Association throughout the Western Hemisphere, we express our condemnation over the murder of reporter Abdias Jean, and we ask for an immediate investigation to find those responsible and demand that there be the necessary safeguards for a free press in Haiti.?

RSF has had a clear and obvious lack of objectivity in its reporting on Haiti.   I stand by all of the information printed in our article at   http://www.counterpunch.com/barahona08012006.html