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a793: Haiti moves on OAS January 15, 2002 resolution (fwd)
The Government of Haiti Moves Expeditiously to Comply with the January 15, 2002 OAS Permanent Council Resolution to Resolve the Electoral Crisis in Haiti
The following steps have been taken to implement terms of the January 15 resolution. Some measures by the Government of Haiti (GOH) were in place before the resolution was adopted. In cases where the GOH is required to initiate action to be taken by the international community, it has promptly done so. For instance, the GOH still awaits responses from relevant sectors of the international community, specifically the OAS and the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights.
In a letter dated February 1, 2002 President Aristide thanked CARICOM for sending a Special Mission to Haiti (January 28-31, 2002) and reaffirmed his pledge to undertake all the elements of the January 15 OAS resolution.
The following measures illustrate the progress of Haiti’s compliance:
Articles 1 and 2 –
1. To condemn the loss of life and the destruction of property resulting from the events of December 17, 2001.
2. To urge the Government of Haiti, all political parties, civil society, and other relevant institutions of Haitian society to condemn and work towards ending all forms of political violence.
Among various statements calling for peace and reconciliation, on December 17, President Aristide swiftly and publicly denounced all acts of violence, no matter the source, stating in relevant part, “I send my patriotic sympathies to everyone who has been a victim, in any way. I condemn – without reservation – all forms of violence.”
a. the completion of a thorough, independent inquiry into the events related to December 17, 2001;
In a letter dated February 1, 2002, the Government of Haiti asked the OAS Secretary General to consider the formation by the OAS of a potential commission of three legal experts, including one from CARICOM, to accompany the Haitian justice system in their investigation of recent violent events including two attempts to overthrow the government and after violence, and other acts of political violence.
b. the prosecution of any person, and dismissal, when appropriate, of any person found to be complicit in the violence of December 17, 2001, and subsequent days;
A team of three investigating judges has been assigned to the case. The Minister of Justice guaranteed that those responsible would be brought to justice, no matter their political leanings.
c. the completion of a thorough inquiry into all politically-motivated crimes;
The President called upon the judicial and police authorities to redouble their efforts in the investigations of the deaths of Jean Dominique, Brignol Lindor and other victims of politically motivated violence.
In the case of Lindor/Duverger, four arrests have been made and 20 warrants have been issued by the investigating judge. President Aristide dissolved the municipal cartel of Petit-Goave, after allegations that the deputy mayor of that city was involved in the Lindor incident, in accordance with Article 79 of the Haitian Constitution.
d. reparations for organizations and individuals who suffered damages as a direct result of the violence of December 17, 2001;
An inter-ministerial commission has been created to assess the damage caused to properties. The members of the commission attempted to inspect the sites of the damaged buildings, but were denied access. The commission stands ready to return to complete these inspections. The GOH has expressed its willingness to obtain technical assistance in this area from the international community.
e. an invitation to the OAS to send representatives to Haiti to investigate and assess the situation and to assist the Government and people of Haiti in strengthening their democratic system and institutions, and
f. an invitation to the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights to conduct an on-site visit to Haiti.
In letters dated January 22, 2002, the GOH asked both the OAS and the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights to form delegations to send to Haiti. To date, no formal response has been received from either of these entities.
7. To call upon the Government of Haiti and all political parties, with the support of civil society and other relevant institutions in Haiti, to resume OAS-sponsored negotiations as a matter of urgency, as soon as conditions are conducive to discussions, with a view to reaching an agreement to resolve the political crisis in Haiti.
President Aristide has repeatedly expressed the Government’s willingness to return to the negotiating table. He reiterated this desire immediately following the events of December 17, 2002.
12. To call upon the Government of Haiti to guarantee to the said OAS Mission under reference at paragraph 3 above and to the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights, as well as those international NGOs with a recognized presence in Haiti, free and safe access to all elements of Haitian civil society, including the press and opposition parties.
The Government of Haiti has always honored its obligations in this realm, providing for the comfort and security of these missions to Haiti. By launching the invitations to the OAS and the IACHR, the Government has demonstrated its willingness to cooperate with these organizations.