December 28, 2003

Fort Lauderdale — Critics of Haitian President Jean-Bertrand Aristide demonstrated in South Florida for a second straight day Saturday, shifting their focus to Broward County in hopes of showing widespread opposition to a man they call a murderous dictator.

More than 50 Haitian-American demonstrators showed up in front of the
Broward County Federal Building on Broward Boulevard late in the afternoon, carrying signs denouncing Aristide. Some called on him to step down voluntarily, almost 10 years after a U.S.-led military action brought him back to power. Others urged President Bush to remove him by force.

“Saddam Hussein first! Aristide next!” they chanted, while some held signs juxtaposing photos of the Haitian president with the deposed Iraqi dictator.

“Too much blood has been spilled in
Haiti. He has to go,” said protest organizer Lucy Orlando, president of the Haitian American Republican Caucus.

Demonstrators accused Aristide of murdering political opponents and building his personal wealth at the expense of the impoverished nation.
Seymour Philippe, 60, said then-President Bill
Clinton made a huge mistake in supporting Aristide’s return to power after exile in 1994.

United States government has very good intelligence,” he said. “He knew what Aristide was. That decision destroyed us.”

Rafael Olmeda can be reached at or 954-356-4207.

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