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9948: Haiti : RSF seeks arrest of journalist Brignol Lindor's killers following their confession (fwd)

From: RSF Americas <ameriques@rsf.org>

7 December 2001


Reporters sans frontières seeks arrest of journalist Brignol Lindor's
killers following their confession

In a letter to President Jean-Bertrand Aristide, RSF asked that the
individuals behind the murder of journalist Brignol Lindor be
immediately arrested. During a local investigation, the Haitian
Journalists Association (Association des journalistes haïtiens, AJH)
collected a statement from members of the People's Organisation
(organisation populaire, OP) Dormi Nan Bois, which is close to the
ruling Fanmi Lavalas party. In their statement, the OP members
confessed to having murdered the journalist. "We also ask that Mr.
Dumay Bony, the Petit-Goâve mayor's assistant who had publicly called
for the killing of Brignol Lindor, also be arrested," stated RSF
Secretary-General Robert Ménard. "You have here a unique opportunity to
initiate a first step towards ending the impunity that reigns in
Haiti," the organisation concluded.

According to information collected by RSF, on 5 December 2001, the AJH
announced that several members of the Dormi Nan Bois OP, which is close
to the ruling Fanmi Lavalas party, admitted to having killed Lindor.
The confessions were collected by AJH President Guyler Delva, who went
to the scene of the crime with police officers. The killers, who
demanded to see him alone, told Delva that they killed Lindor, "not
because he was a journalist, but as an opposition member." They
explained that the murder was a revenge attack against Convergence
démocratique (an opposition party), following an assault on Joseph Céus
Duverger, a member of their organisation, that same morning. However,
the victim's brother has firmly denied that Lindor was a member of the

According to the AJH, the Dormi Nan Bois members first abducted
Convergence démocratique member Love Augustin, who explained that his
attackers lost interest in him once they caught sight of Lindor. They
then went towards Lindor's vehicle, all the while specifically
identifying him as the journalist mentioned by the Petit-Goâve mayor's
assistant, Bony, as the person to whom the "zero tolerance" policy
needed to be applied. Dormi Nan Bois officials admitted to having
detained Augustin. They specified, however, that the crowd that was
present at the scene was also responsible for the killing. They also
admitted though to having sealed off the area in order to find Emmanuel
Clédanor and kill him. Clédanor, a former Radio Plus correspondent, was
accompanying Lindor but managed to escape.

Delva stated that he turned over all his information to Bellande
Dumerzier, the government's deputy superintendent, who is responsible
for the case. Dumerzier stated that he issued arrest warrants for Bony
and the journalist's killers, and Duverger's attackers. The police have
yet to make any arrests.

On 3 December, Lindor, information director of Radio Echo 2000, a
private radio station in the city of Petit-Goâve (sixty-eight
kilometres south-west of Port-au-Prince), was killed by a crowd that
stoned him and attacked him with machetes. Lindor had received many
death threats from local authorities who are members of the ruling
party after inviting opposition figures to speak on his programme
"Dialogue". On 30 November, Bony had called for the application of the
"zero tolerance" policy to the opposition. He specifically made
reference to Lindor. Under the "zero tolerance" policy,  launched on 28
June by President Aristide, trials of delinquents who are caught
red-handed are not required. Since the policy's launch, several dozen
assumed criminals have been lynched by citizens, with the police's
presumed collusion, according to human rights organisations.

Lindor, aged 26, a former Radio Signal FM local correspondent and
former assistant secretary-general of the Petit-Goâve Journalists'
Association, was also a school principal and customs agent with the

<italic>Reporters Sans Frontières defends jailed journalists and press
freedom throughout the world, that is, the right to inform and be
informed, in accordance with Article 19 of the Universal Declaration of
Human Rights. Reporters Sans Frontières has nine sections (Austria,
Belgium, France, Germany, Italy, Spain, Sweden and Switzerland and
United Kingdom), representatives in Abidjan, Bangkok, Montréal, Tokyo
and Washington, and about a hundred correspondents worldwide.

Régis Bourgeat

Despacho Américas / Americas desk

Reporters sans frontières

5, rue Geoffroy-Marie

75009 Paris - France

tél. : +33 (0) 1 44 83 84 57

fax : +33 (0) 1 45 23 11 51

e-mail : ameriques@rsf.org

	/ americas@rsf.org