Originally: Statement of Representative Marie St. Fleur

With the Support of Haitian-Americans United (HAU)

Haiti?s political situation has deteriorated during the past three weeks. Rebels have taken control of several cities including Cap Haitien, the country?s second largest city, as well as other important urban centers such as Hinche, and Gonaives. Police units have abandoned their posts in other parts of the country. Over 50 people have been killed and the country has descended into complete economic, political and social instability.  Democratic stability and public order must be established in Haiti in order to avert civil war and greater humanitarian disaster.

We support the establishment of democratic stability and public order in Haiti. We acknowledge the efforts and initiatives of the international community, particularly those of the Organization of American States (OAS) and the Caribbean Community (CARICOM), to resolve the conflict through peaceful and diplomatic means. We urge the United States to support the establishment of Democratic stability and the restoration of the rule of law in the country.  The United States must:
· Play a leadership role to ensure that the United Nations provides the means necessary to disarm the armed gangs and provide a peace keeping force to ensure public order in the country.

· Play a leadership role to assure that humanitarian assistance is provided and reached the people of Haiti, particularly those most in need.

· Facilitate the resolution of all conflicts through diplomatic means and the immediate convening of mediation and negotiation sessions with all the stakeholders.

Democracy in Haiti must be established.  The United States and the United Nations must advocate for full and fair application of and compliance with the Haitian Constitution in all matters.

Representative Marie St. Fleur and Haitian-Americans United, Inc. will host a Town Meeting on the Haitian crisis on Wednesday, February 25, 2004, 6:30 PM at the Church of the Nazarene located at 600 Washington St. in Codman Square. For more information, please contact Nigel Simon in Representative Marie St. Fleur?s office.