Originally: Pro Democracy Demonstration planned; the Group Calls on the government to allow Peaceful Protest


For further information: 

Please call Charles Henri Baker (011.509) 401-4868

And/or Yanick Lahens (011.509) 408-9629

Pro Democracy Demonstration planned; the Group Calls on the government to allow Peaceful Protest

General Strike to follow protest

Port-au-Prince, Haiti ? Haitians united against the dictatorship of the Aristide government plan to mount a peaceful protest on Wednesday, January 7th, 2004, to request the departure of President Jean Bertrand Aristide and the creation of a transitional government to pave the way for a true democracy.

The demonstration is scheduled to start at 10:00AM on Wednesday, January 7th at Place Saint Pierre, Petion-Ville, and to end its course at Place Jeremie in Carrefour Feuille.

In a statement accompanying the announcement, group organizers also issued a plea to governments with representatives in the capital to firmly convey to the Aristide government that it should respect the basic human rights guaranteed under the Haitian Constitution as well as the declarations of the United Nations.  If not, it will be a stain on the honor of freedom-loving nations if they stand idly by the brutal tactics of thugs employed or sanctioned by the Aristide government.

The protest organizers also asked local and international press representatives in the capital to attend and witness the event.

La Plate-forme Democratique de la Société Civil et des Partis Politiques de l?Opposition, an unprecedented coalition of people representing a broad spectrum of the long-suffering population, will join the Haitian public to dramatize their demands for freedom from tyranny.  They characterized the effort as a struggle not for power, but for freedom.

The Group added that it does not condone violence and rejects the regime?s murderous approach to governing.  Calling it their ?beacon of hope,? the Group said it supports the Haitian Constitution and said its efforts are being carried out in accordance with both the spirit and letter of that document.

This day of peaceful demonstration will be followed by two (2) days of general strike, on January 8th and 9th, 2004.