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8369: Highlights of Radio Metropole news (fwd)

From: Max Blanchet <maxblanchet@worldnet.att.net>

Haiti: Highlights of Radio Metropole news 1145 gmt 18 Jun 01
BBC Monitoring Service - United Kingdom; Jun 19, 2001

Figures in brackets indicate time in minutes elapsed since start of

1. [00] Headlines.

2. [03] The countdown has practically begun for the president of the
republic, who has proposed the creation of an independent Provisional
Electoral Council, CEP, no later than 25 June, as recommended by the OAS.
The task seems to be delicate for Jean-Bertrand Aristide, who has not
managed to dissipate the fears of certain key sectors about the credibility
of the next CEP unless there is a compromise. The deadline is a week away,
and negotiations seem to be unavoidable.

Correspondent Romney Cajuste explains: Less than eight days before the 25
June deadline for the formation of a new independent CEP, it seems to be
very difficult for the Presidency to shape the electoral apparatus according
to the OAS recommendations. Certain key sectors are reluctant to get
involved in the undertaking, or at least want to some guarantees before they
do so. The Catholic Church has responded to the president's invitation for
them to participate in the formation of the CEP. They made some proposals
related to the credibility of the next CEP. On the other hand, the
Protestant community is still exploring the possibility of becoming involved
in the electoral institution. This atmosphere of reticence to several
meetings between the protagonists last week. The participants refused to
make any comments.

However, this series of discussions has been somewhat successful because the
protagonists will meet formally this week to review the possibility of
laying the foundation for a new consensus on the new CEP.

3. [05] Meanwhile, the ruling party that the process of forming a new CEP
will be accelerated in the days to come. The Lavalas Family, FL, hopes that
the invited sectors will agree to participate in the CEP to establish a
credible electoral apparatus.

4. [07] The GISC calls on the sense of responsibility of FL and the
Convergence so that the country will not be penalized even more. The GISC
has invited the protagonists to tackle serious negotiations this week, which
they think will be decisive. The GISC hopes that a foundation will be laid
for the establishment of a credible CEP.

5. [08] The Democratic Convergence continues to set conditions for its
participation in the next independent and neutral CEP, which has been
requested by the OAS. The opposition coalition has declared its support for
an agreement with the Lavalas Family and asks for the support of the

6. [12] Yesterday was the national day of prayer. Solidarity among
Christians for the deliverance of Haiti was the theme of the religious
ceremony that took place between the Catholic, Episcopal, and Protestant
churches in the Port-au-Prince Cathedral. The ceremony took place in the
presence of personalities from civil society and the opposition. The
Christians' message to the politicians was to resolve the crisis through

7. [15] Ads.

8.[20] Opinion poll.

9. [21] Examining Judge Claudy Gassant has been in the United States since
16 June. The judge was in charge of the investigation into the murder of
Jean Dominique. He resigned about a week ago and left the country for family
and security reasons. Gassant, whom pro-Lavalas people's organization want
arrested, said he would take back the case on condition that Justice of the
Peace Gabriel Ambroise, the author of the counterinvestigation, and Police
Traffic Superintendent Evens Saintune, who attacked the examining judge, are

10. [23] The Ecumenical Centre for Human Rights is said to be concerned
about the turn of the events. However, the director of the centre is
hopeful, because the public prosecutor has announced disciplinary measures
against Judge Gabriel Ambroise. Jean-Claude Bajeux called for society to
mobilize so that justice can be obtained for Jean Dominique. The following
is an excerpt of Bajeux's statement: "It is certain that we should all
support the examining judge, who has a delicate case to handle. We ask the
government and the justice minister to ensure the security of Judge Gassant
if he returns, if he agrees to return and take back the dossier. We also ask
the government to ensure the security of his successor, if Gassant does not
return, and that the case should be taken into consideration with tenacity
and with all the means that we have. It should not be abandoned along the
way, as has happened to several other cases."

11. [25] The Court of Cassation will soon decide the case of Prosper Avril,
who has been in prison since 25 May. Public Prosecutor Josue Pierre-Louis
has decided to brief the judges of the Supreme Court on the ruling by the
Court of Appeals, which ordered Avril's release. The defence council said it
is shocked by the decision of the public prosecutor and affirmed that the
members of the highest judicial authorities will have the final word.

Defence attorney Reynold Georges said "the Appeals Court ruling is based on
Article 26-1 of the Constitution, and that decision cannot be followed by
any other appeal. Even if he [public prosecutor] would be empowered to do
so, that power would not be substantive. He would still have to release the
general." Georges adds: "I believe that he is practicing unnecessary
stalling tactics that will not honour the law, the public prosecutor's
office, or the Lavalas government, although the members of the Lavalas party
do not care about honour. I urge him to release the general tomorrow
morning. Otherwise, Article 150 of the Penal Code will strike him hard."

12. [28] Electricity of Haiti, EDH, announces that four supplementary hours
of electricity will be provided to customers. The EDH director suggests
means to provide electricity to the people and to get them pay for it.

13. [31] The chamber of commerce in Cap-Haitien wants the region to
participate in the distribution of the electricity, because they have
electricity problems in Cap-Haitien, too.

14. [34] Ads, followed by international news.

15. [45] News summary, followed by ads.

16. [50] Economic segment by Kesner Pharel.

17. [55] Humor segment by Francois Latour.

Source: Radio Metropole, Port-au-Prince, in French 1145 gmt 18 Jun 01

/BBC Monitoring/  BBC.