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9228: Minister of Culture press release on Constant process (fwd)




From: MKarshan@aol.com


NOTE TO THE PRESS FROM THE MINISTER OF CULTURE AND 
COMMUNICATIONS ON OCTOBER 4, 2001


Regarding the dossier of Mr. Emmanuel Constant, the Government of Haiti government informs the public of the following:

1.  On the 14th of March 1995, the Minister of Foreign Affairs at that time, Claudette Werleigh, acting on a request from Haitiís Justice Minister, wrote a letter to the U.S. Secretary of State, Warren Christopher, requesting the extradition of Emmanuel Constant and Jodel Chamblain. This correspondence was accompanied by documents from the Instruction Judge of the First Instance Court of Port-au-Prince.

2.  Meanwhile, Mr. Constant was placed under arrest in May 1995, after the State Department had revoked his visa. A federal judge, immediately thereafter, pronounced a judgment of deportation against him.

3.  The U.S. government, by its Immigration and Naturalization Service of its Justice Department, solicited, by letter dated the 14th of December 1995, a travel document for Emmanuel Constant in order to return him to Haiti.  This was done by the Embassy of Haiti in Washington.

4.  The Government of Haiti also gave its guarantee of security that the U.S. government requested as a condition for the deportation of Mr. Constant.  At this time, the demand for 
extradition, which had become moot by the judgment of deportation against Mr. Constant, was no longer necessary.

5.  It was during this waiting period that Mr. Constant was set free on June 14, 1996. The U.S. Government, to justify their decision, invoked a law that sets a deadline for how long a person under such an explosion order can be imprisoned.  In the case of Mr. Constant, that deadline would have expired on June 13, 1996.

6.  Haitiís Minister of Foreign Affairs immediately denounced the liberation of Mr. 
Constant.

The Government of Haiti continues to press for the deportation to be executed in the very near future so that Emmanuel Constant can respond to criminal charges before Haitiís justice system.

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