La Via Campesina joins social movements and civil society to extend solidarity to the beloved people of Haiti in their struggle for Democracy, Justice and MINUSTAH Reparations. Read the full statement below. Download the PDF Statement with signatories
To the UN Secretary General, António Guterres
To the Secretary General of the OAS, Luis Almagro
To the governments of the member countries of the UN and the OAS
To the people of Haiti and their organizations
Haiti is once again going through a very deep crisis. At present, a central element of this crisis is the struggle against the dictatorship imposed by former President Jovenel Moïse. Since last year, after decreeing the cessation of Parliament, he has been ruling by decree, in permanent violation of the country’s Constitution. Thus, for example, he refuses to leave power despite the fact that his mandate expired on February 7, 2021, claiming that it ends on February 7 of next year, without any legal basis. He does this despite multiple pronouncements against it by the main legal bodies of the country, such as the CSPJ (Superior Council of the Judiciary), the Federation of Haitian Lawyers Associations, as well as Religious Federations and numerous institutions representative of the society.
At that time, there was also a strike of judicial officials which left the country without any judicial body functioning.
At the same time, this institutional crisis is part of an insecurity that affects practically all sectors of Haitian society. An insecurity that is expressed through savage repression of popular mobilizations by the HNP (Haitian National Police) domesticated by the Executive, attacks on journalists, various massacres in popular neighborhoods, assassinations and arbitrary arrests of opponents, detention of a judge of the Court of Cassation under the pretext of fomenting an alleged plot against the security of the State and to assassinate him, illegal and arbitrary revocation of three judges of this Court, creation of hundreds of armed groups that sow terror over the entire national territory and that respond to the power, transforming the kidnapping of people into a very prosperous industry for these criminals.
The 13 years of military occupation by the United Nations troops through ‘MINUSTAH peacekeepers’, as well as the operations of prolongation of a situation of tutelage through the United Nations Mission for Justice Support in Haiti (MINUJUSTH) and BINUH (United Nations Integrated Office in Haiti) have aggravated the Haitian crisis, supporting the retrograde, anti-democratic and mafia sectors.
In addition, they committed serious crimes against the Haitian population and their fundamental rights (such as the introduction of cholera) that deserve exemplary processes of justice and reparation. The Haitian people paid dearly for the MINUSTAH intervention: 30 THOUSAND DEAD from cholera carried by the soldiers, thousands of women raped, who now have orphaned children of living parents, the soldiers who returned to their countries. Nothing changed positively in 13 years, more social inequality, more poverty, more difficulties for the people and absence of democracy.
The living conditions of the popular sectors have worsened dramatically as a consequence of more than 30 years of neo-liberal policies imposed by the International Financial Institutions (IFIs), a severe exchange rate crisis, the freezing of the minimum wage and an inflation rate of more than 20% during the last 3 years. It should now be emphasised that, despite this dramatic situation, the Haitian people remain firm and are constantly mobilising to prevent the consolidation of this dictatorship by demanding the immediate departure of former President Jovenel Moïse. Recently, on February 14 and 28, hundreds of thousands of citizens clearly expressed in the streets their rejection of the dictatorship and their firm commitment to the respect of the Constitution.
Considering the importance of this struggle and that this dictatorial regime still enjoys the support of imperialist governments such as the United States, Canada, France and international organisations such as the UN, the OAS, the EU and the IMF, we call to listen to the people of Haiti who demand the end of the dictatorship as well as the respect for their sovereignty and self-determination and the establishment of a political transition regime controlled by the Haitian actors that has enough space to launch a process of genuine national reconstruction.
We call on the UN and the OAS – which certainly has neither the right nor the moral right to interfere in elections and other internal affairs of member countries – and on the governments of all countries, especially those that have lent themselves to “occupy Haiti as humanitarians” for 13 years, through MINUSTAH, to stop behaving as if Haiti were their colony. Enough of interference! Their duty is another: to ensure justice and reparations for all the crimes they have committed against that people and country, including the introduction of cholera, rape and sexual abuse, the impunity of their electoral manipulation and the use of “cooperation” for their own ends.
Only the Haitian people can decide on their future, but in that journey they can count on our solidarity and willingness to support them with all the actions within our reach. We support the people and movements of Haiti so that they can elect a popular transitional government and a Constituent in a democratic way.
For a Free and Sovereign Haiti!
Download the Statement with signatories