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#3373: Top official in Haiti's troubled police force resigns (fwd)

From: Rosann Clements <rosann@onemain.com>

Top official in Haiti's troubled police force resigns
By Michael Norton, Associated Press, 4/26/2000 19:21
PORT-AU-PRINCE, Haiti (AP) The man responsible for investigating the
misdeeds of Haiti's troubled police force has resigned, a leading newspaper
reported Wednesday.
A police spokesman would not confirm the resignation of Luc Eucher Joseph,
head of the police internal affairs division, but a foreign diplomat,
speaking on condition that his name not be used, said Joseph quit Sunday.
The departure fueled fears that police, who have faced criticism for their
failure to rein in a wave of political violence, will be unable to provide
security during May 21 elections.
Joseph had received high marks from international officials for his efforts
to root out corruption in the police force, especially among officers
accused of involvement in cocaine-trafficking.
But during violent street demonstrations last year, supporters of former
President Jean-Bertrand Aristide accused police of doing little to fight
crime and demanded the resignations of Joseph and Robert Manuel, then the
national security undersecretary.
Manuel resigned in October, charging that Aristide activists were trying to
destabilize local and legislative elections, which have been postponed three
times since November.
Manuel's likely successor was assassinated the day after he resigned.
Le Nouvelliste, the country's most respected independent newspaper, reported
that Joseph has been given a job in the Haitian mission at the United
Nations in Geneva.
Since March 29, 10 people have been killed in politically related violence
in Haiti and no arrests have been made.
The Haitian civilian police force numbered at more than 5,000 officers was
deployed in June 1995 after the dismantling of the Haitian army that had
ousted Aristide in a bloody 1991 coup.
By October 1999, the police had weeded 407 officers on charges ranging from
human rights abuses to theft and drug-dealing, Amnesty International