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8648: Haiti: Opposition questions motives for Aristide's criticism and his U-turn (fwd)

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

Haiti: Opposition questions motives for Aristide's criticism and his U-turn
BBC Monitoring Service - United Kingdom; Jul 11, 2001

The political news is dominated by the statement that President Aristide
made in Port-de-Paix yesterday. The president of the republic was very
critical of the opposition who, according to him, continue to ask for the
resumption of the contested elections. The head of state affirmed already
having made maximum concessions to the opposition. Micha Gaillard [a member
of the opposition Democratic Convergence] comments on the presidential
statement by phone:

[Gaillard] [Passage omitted]

[Unidentified journalist] What message do you think President Aristide
wanted to send when he made that statement in Port-de-Paix that the
opposition is too demanding and Lavalas has already made enough concessions?

[Gaillard] I think he is just coming to the rescue of Yvon Neptune [interim
Lavalas leader] and the other Lavalas leaders to try to erase something we
already acquired on 3 July at 0400 [local times throughout]. It was
something decided upon and I do not know why he is trying to make a U-turn.
Before [OAS Secretary-General] Cesar Gaviria returns he is trying to go back
over positions, which we consider to be unacceptable.

I would remind you that during the night from 2 to 3 July, especially at
0200, gradually, step by step, we of the Convergence, the churches, civil
society and the international community witnessed successive and progressive
concessions from Lavalas, which agreed to hold elections for 12, 15 and even
up to 18 senators. They were even trying to see how elections could be held
for the territorial collectivities. We all witnessed that.

Unfortunately, I do not know what happened after that between 0400 and 1000.
They made an about-turn. Aristide is coming to the rescue of his Lavalas
colleagues to try to undo what was already done.

[Journalist] The OAS secretary-general is coming back to Port-au-Prince once
again this Thursday [12 July]. At the level of the Convergence, what are you
going to request as regards the resumption of the discussions?

[Gaillard] We are going to request that we should start from where we left
off last time. We have an initial draft agreement. We even have the fourth
version of that initial draft agreement. That draft agreement contains four
points and two and a half of them have been resolved.

We shall ask Gaviria not to go back to what was already decided upon. We had
agreed on the method for forming the CEP [Provisional Electoral Council],
which is already known. We also agreed on the points for discussion
regarding a political agreement. The points were: strengthening of
democracy, respect for human rights, socioeconomic development, governance
and transparency... [End of recording]

Source: Radio Metropole, Port-au-Prince, in French 1145 gmt 10 Jul 01

/BBC Monitoring/  BBC.