Another Haiti is Possible


March 15, 2013

By Beverly Bell
March 15, 2013

Twenty-seven years later, the unimaginable has become real. Former dictator Jean-Claude “Baby Doc” Duvalier has been brought to trial for crimes against humanity.

Will justice finally arrive for the hundreds of thousands who were murdered, tortured, imprisoned, beaten, savaged, and degraded by him and his father, François “Papa Doc” Duvalier?



March 8, 2013

By Beverly Bell
March 8, 2013

On this International Women's Day, we rerun a 2005 piece on one of our greatest heroines, Marie Simone Alexandre. Though she died eight years ago, her life and message remain as powerful and inspirational today as any we know. 

"It was thanks to God and Sister Simone." I heard this over and over in the mid-1990s as I was interviewing rape survivors in one of Port-au-Prince's shantytowns. The women were battling the devastating effects of rape, employed as a weapon of war by one in a decades-long series of U.S.-backed regimes.[i] My question to these women, which so often invoked Simone's name, was "From where have you found the strength to go on?"

Urgent Action: Displaced Face Arbitrary Arrest

March 7, 2013

Re-posted from Amnesty International

Residents at Grace Village camp, in the Carrefour area of metropolitan Port-au-Prince, have been informed by local police that they have a list of people from the camp they plan to arrest. On 15 February residents learned that an arrest warrant had been issued for two residents, one of whom is a camp committee member. On 18 February, residents reported that police came to the camp and arrested another camp committee member.


March 5, 2013

By Beverly Bell
March 5, 2013

Three years after the deadly earthquake in Haiti, what has become of the commitments made on Red Cross billboards, the promises from telethon hosts, the moving declarations of Presidents Obama and Clinton? What has happened to the nearly $10 billion that was pledged to assist survivors and to rebuild, most of which was entrusted to the large non-governmental organizations (NGOs) that Professor Mark Schuller terms “non-profiteers”?

Former Haitian Dictator Denies Abuses at Historic Hearing

March 4, 2013
Jean-Claude “Baby Doc” Duvalier at his Feb. 28, 2013 hearing. The sweltering courtroom was packed with over a dozen victims of the regime and with local and foreign journalists, lawyers and representatives of human rights groups. Credit: Milo Milfort/IPS

Jean-Claude “Baby Doc” Duvalier at his Feb. 28, 2013 hearing. The sweltering courtroom was packed with over a dozen victims of the regime and with local and foreign journalists, lawyers and representatives of human rights groups. Credit: Milo Milfort/IPS

PORT-AU-PRINCE, Mar 1 2013 (IPS) - For the first time ever, on Thursday Haiti’s former dictator faced his accusers, answering questions about corruption and human rights abuses during his brutal 15-year regime (1971-1986).

Haitian Senate Calls for Halt to Mining Activities

March 1, 2013

Cross-posted from Inter Press Service

By Jane Regan

Map showing location of Morne Bossa property (VCS / Société Miniere Delta). Credit: VCS website 

PORT-AU-PRINCE, Feb 24 2013 (IPS) - Outraged that they have not been consulted, this week Haitian senators called for a moratorium on all activities connected with recently granted gold and copper mining permits.

In a resolution approved by 15 of 16 senators present, the lawmakers also demanded the establishment of a commission to review all of the current mining contracts and “a national debate on the country’s mineral resources”.

Press Release by the Institute for Justice & Democracy in Haiti: Jean-Claude Duvalier Appears in Court

March 1, 2013

Jean-Claude Duvalier’s appearance in court was a positive step towards justice

February 28, 2013, Port-au-Prince, Haiti – Ordered by a court summons, former dictator Jean-Claude Duvalier testified today before dozens of journalists and victims in a packed court room of Haiti’s Court of Appeals.  Duvalier answered questions from the court, victims’ lawyers and his own lawyers for almost four hours. 


February 28, 2013

The following call to action is being circulated by Batay Ouvriye (Worker's Stuggle), one of Haiti's most active national workers' movements. Batay Ouvriye says,

"In a Port-au-Prince factory (Clifford APAID’s Premium Apparel) one of our comrades (a coordinating member of the SOTA national worker's union), was badly beaten by a managers who, according to reports, was acting in the name of the factory's management. He had organized a protest confronting the fact that the textile owners continued to refuse to pay the 300 gourdes miminum wage, effective as of October 2012. Later on, our comrade was literally kicked out by the factory security. He was so hurt that he had to be directly accompanied to the nearest hospital....

This note, which serves as a denunciation and an alert to all sympathizers to the workers' cause and the people in general, also aims to serve as a call for a determined collective action...

Our allies in Miami, One Struggle, suggest we address Gildan directly, which is a very good and concrete opportunity to see how those companies really feel about the abuse of workers in Haiti."

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