Originally: 14 Years After the 1991 Coup d?Etat : RNDDH reflects
30 September 1991 ? 30 September 2005. On the fourteenth (14th) anniversary of the bloody coup against President Jean Bertrand Aristide in 1991, RNDDH believes it is crucial to recognize and acknowledge the negative impact this event has had on the Haitian struggle for bringing change and democracy to the country.
No one can forget that night of 29 / 30 September 1991, when the Haitian Armed Forces (FAD?H)orchestrated a coup d?état against a newly installed government, democratically elected on 16 December 1990.
Several months later, the FAD?H formed an alliance with the paramilitary group the Revolutionary Front for the Progress of Haiti (FRAPH). Later changing its name to the Front for the Advancement and Progress of Haiti, FRAPH literally and figuratively crushed the Haitian people. The consequences were outstanding. Thousands were killed while others were disappeared. Horrendous acts of torture and rape were committed, accompanied by rampant theft and pillaging. Arbitrary and illegal arrests were commonplace. These were the characteristics of life in Haiti during the coup d?état years (1991-1994).
Today, it is with a great deal of indignation that RNDDH continues to note that:
? those responsible for the killings, torture, and rapes continue to benefit from impunity at the highest level;
? those convicted for their involvement in the Raboteau Massacre against supporters of the overthrown Lavalas government are free ;
? former assailants have re-surfaced with increased arrogance. The hope of the Haitian people is sacrificed once again as one of those who should be in the hands of justice has recently announced his candidacy in the upcoming elections;
? today, in the same spirit of the coup d?état years, criminals and gang members ? this time associated with the Lavalas party ? are terrorizing the population with actions carried out under Operation Baghdad. Since the launching of this operation one (1) year ago today, more than 1,200 people have lost their lives, including 75 police officers and 4 UN soldiers. Women and men have been raped, kidnapped and persecuted, and homes and property destroyed by fire;
? instead of witnessing a UN mission united with the Haitian National Police (PNH) in view of putting an end to Operation Baghdad, one has the impression that MUNISTAH would rather protect alleged criminals, serving only to reinforce the level of impunity that already exists in the country;
? rather than working to shed light on the incidents of the past that have resulted in great suffering for victims and their families, the Boniface-Latortue government is encouraging impunity by its inaction in responding to the victims of the Raboteau and Cité Soleil Massacres in 1994 and 1993 respectively;
? one and a half (1½) years after the installation of the interim government no visible determination to end impunity has been manifested; the people?s demand for justice goes unheeded, as in the example of the victims of the violence in La Scierie who have yet to obtain justice; nothing has changed; and
? armed gangs have imposed their power in several parts of the country, such as Gonaïves, Cité Soleil, Bel Air, Solino, lower Delmas, Martissant, Petit Bois etc.
RNDDH takes this opportunity, on 30 September 2005 to denounce the manner in which the authorities in place are managing several high profile cases such as the Raboteau and Cité Soleil Massacres, the cases of Antoine Izmery, Arlette Belance, and Guy Malary, along with the cases of other activists who lost their lives during the coup d?état years.
Fully engaged in the struggle against the tendency to deny the past, RNDDH believes that the fourteenth (14th) anniversary of the violent and bloody coup d?état is an appropriate time to reflect on Haiti?s past, to question the present, and to look beyond to the future. A people without memory, is a people without a future.
Port-au-Prince, 29 September 2005