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8737: Haiti: Highlights of Radio Haiti-Inter news (fwd)

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

 Haiti: Highlights of Radio Haiti-Inter news 1200 gmt 16 Jul 01
BBC Monitoring Service - United Kingdom; Jul 16, 2001

The "Inter Current Events" newscast: figures in brackets indicate time in
minutes elapsed since the start of the programme

1. [00] Prelude to the Inter Current Call for Events newscast followed by
headlines and ads.

2. [10] Report on the US dollar exchange rates in Port-au-Prince banks
yesterday followed by ads.

3. [13] Report on progress in the negotiations being held for the resolution
of the crisis. The Haitian parties have agreed to continue the negotiations
without the participation of the OAS after the departure of OAS Secretary
General Cesar Gaviria from Haiti today. This time, spokesmen for both
parties comment without criticizing or contradicting each other as they
usually do. Former Senator Paul Denis, spokesman for the Convergence, spoke
as follows: "We worked a great deal over the weekend. //We certainly made
progress. We agreed on very important points such as the committee for
electoral guarantees, the question of international cooperation about the
process, and the security issue. We nevertheless still need to reach an
agreement on important points such as the question of mandate [of the
Provisional Electoral Council, CEP], the question of political and
administrative environment... The decision we have made tonight is that we
will keep working in a transparent framework after Cesar Gaviria's departure
so we can continue the discussions, to deepen them so that we can reach a
compromise on the basis of a political agreement as soon as possible.//" For
his part, Prime Minister Jean Marie Cherestal said that the fact that both
parties decided to meet with the press together proves that they are not far
from reaching a solution. Cherestal's statements follow: "//We have agreed
that we, including the Convergence, FL [Lavalas Family], and the government,
will keep negotiating... I think this is a very good step. In addition to
what Senator Denis just told you, the fact that we are talking to you now is
a sign that we are not far from the solution of this crisis.//" FL interim
national representative Yvon Neptune said that progress has been made in the
negotiations and that "an agreement and a consensus have been reached on the
majority of the points." He added: "We have differences about the deadlines
for holding the elections."

4. [21] Rosny Desroches of the Civil Society Initiative Group, GISC, talked
about the progress observed in the negotiations. His statements follow: "We
can say that we in civil society are very satisified... We are always
available as facilitators to help with the resolution of the crisis."
Desroches spoke of "significant progress towards national reconciliation."

5. [22] Ads.

6. [25] Information and Culture Minister Guy Paul confirmed that a meeting
was held the morning of 14 July between government and FL members and
representatives of the international community. He answered journalists'
questions as follows: "Indeed, a meeting took place yesterday morning. This
meeting involved not only the government, but the government and FL....We
wanted to meet with the international community to know what direction they
are moving in and how long it will take them to start releasing funds [in
favour of Haiti] if an agreement is reached." International community
representatives present at the meeting could not say how soon funds would be
released, explaining that they could not make decisions on behalf of their

7. [29] Ads and international news.

8. [42] President Jean-Bertrand Aristide will leave Haiti today for Cuba at
the head of a large delegation. Minister Guy Paul reported: "The president,
accompanied by his wife, will leave at the head of a 12-member official
delegation." Paul explained that this visit is part of the cooperation
between Haiti and Cuba. He added that education, agriculture, fishing,
cultural relations, and infrastructure will be among the issues that
President Aristide will address during this trip.

9. [45] According to Dr (Cubelo), a Cuban official working in Haiti,
Haitian-Cuban cooperation in Haiti is positive. Cuban doctors treated almost
2 million Haitians during the past two years. The Cuban doctor explained
that doctors attended the births of 15,983 children. He added that before
long the infant mortality rate will be very low in Haiti thanks to Cuban
cooperation. It should be pointed out that the Cuban medical team operating
in Haiti, which includes more than 800 doctors, arrived in 1998 at the
invitation of President Rene Preval.

10. [51] Ads.

11. [53] Henry Claude Menard, minister of the interior and territorial
collectivities and second vice-president of the High Council of the Haitian
National Police, PNH, is surprised that a meeting by the High Council of the
PNH and local elected representatives on strategies for security in the
metropolitan area took place at the Magistrates School on Friday, 13 July,
although he was unaware. "I am happy to hear your question because it is
information to me," Menard said. He explained ironically that if they are
discussing something that does not concern him, they may not invite him.

12. [57] Report on an incident involving a crowd control unit, CIMO,
policeman and a group of policemen who were accompanying Police Inspector
General Arvel Victor Jean-Baptiste. The CIMO policeman explained that while
he was returning from the beach one of the police officers accompanying
Jean-Baptiste tried to take away his police identification card. When he
refused to let him take it, one of officers hit him with the butt of his
9-mm gun and others started hitting him.

13. [61] Ads.

14. [62] Forty members of Canadian civil society have signed a letter to
Aristide, Cherestal, Justice Minister Garry Lissade, Public Prosecutor Josue
Pierre-Louis, and Examining Judge Claudy Gassant to demand justice for Jean
Dominique. The signers of this letter told Aristide that it his duty and
responsibility to ensure the safety of Judge Gassant and to make sure that
justice is rendered to Dominique.

15. [64] Playing of the national anthem.

16. [65] One week before the holding of the criminal trials with the
participation of a jury, questions abound as to whether these trials will
actually take place given that most of the prospective jurors have found a
reason to decline the invitation. Attorney Lise Pierre-Pierre, dean of the
Civil Court of Port-au-Prince, explained that citizens do not want to risk
serving as jury members. She said, however, that they will have to do so,
explaining that "citizens do not understand that it is their role and their
duty." Pierre-Pierre explained that about 15 criminal trials are supposed to
be held during this session. Minister Lissade pointed out recently that
persons chosen as jury members are duty bound to answer invitations and
that, according to the law, if they do not show up at the court on trial
days, they will have to pay a fine on the first day of absence that will be
doubled on the second day, and that in addition to that the court will
sentence them to a minimum of five days in jail.

17. [71] International news followed ads.

18. [78] Economic segment by Pierre Emmanuel. Public transportation drivers
operating on the Carrefour-Feuilles - downtown Port-au-Prince route. Drivers
today are observing a 24-hour strike to protest the bad state of the road,
causing wear and tear on their vehicles. "We have decided to observe a
24-hour work stoppage on Monday, 16 July," according to a spokesman for the
drivers. They threaten to resume their strike if officials do not act.

19. [90] International news.

20. [91] Cultural news on the patronal feast of Saut d'Eau on 16 July.

21. [94] Ads.

Source: Radio Haiti-Inter, Port-au-Prince, in French 1200 gmt 16 Jul 01

/BBC Monitoring/  BBC.