September 6, 2005
Half-Hour for Haiti: Plan for Worldwide Solidarity Protests on September 30
This week’s action is to plan to join grassroots activists in Haiti commemorating September 30, the 14 th anniversary of the 1991 coup d’etat against Haiti’s elected government, and the one year anniversary of an intensification of a crackdown on pro-democracy activists in Haiti.
The call to action was launched by the Fondasyon Trant Septanm (September 30 Foundation), Haiti’s largest and most persistent grassroots human rights group. The Foundation has organized a march for justice in Port-au-Prince almost every Wednesday since 1997, and has commemorated September 30 in Port-au-Prince and elsewhere in Haiti for eight straight years.
This year, Fondasyon Trant Septanm teamed with U.S.-based activists to form the Sept. 30 th Organizing Committee, which is coordinating an international day of action in support of justice and democracy in Haiti. International solidarity is particularly important right now because last year Haitian police tried to stop Fondasyon Trant Septanm’s legal demonstration, and when they could not, they opened fire on thousands of protestors. This attack ushered in a wave of attacks against political opponents over the following several weeks. This year, we can help protect vulnerable Haitian democracy activists by showing up on that day and showing that we care.
The Committee’s announcement is below,. We will have website section for the protests, with a list of planned actions in the coming days. If there is not an activity already planned near you, try to organize something with your church, peace, school or community group. Activities can range from large marches to a few people gathering for a vigil. Just be sure that you let the the Sept. 30 th Organizing Committee (510-847-8657 or email@example.com) know, so that your efforts will be counted as part of the international mobilization.
A Call to Action in Solidarity with Haiti
Coordinated International Protests in Many Cities
on September 30, 2005
Dear Activists for Haiti,
The coup regime in Haiti – backed to the hilt by the US, the UN, France and Canada – continues its bloody assault on the poor majority, targeting especially leaders and supporters of the Lavalas grassroots democracy movement.
Now Fondasyon Trant Septanm, a Haitian organization supporting victims of the repression in Haiti, has issued acall forrenewed protests in many cities of the world on September 30, the anniversary of the first US-sponsored coup that ousted President Aristide in 1991.* Haiti will be demonstrating on that day – so should we!
We need to act now in solidarity with our Haitian sisters and brothers, whose unbreakable spirit, in the face of this genocide, just won’t stop. Let us take up this call from Haiti, and make September 30 th an international day of outrage against the US-inspired massacres and the trampling of Haiti’s sovereignty.
Building on the success of the July 21 st coordinated demonstrations
The July 6 th massacre by UN troops in Cite Soleil sparked an international campaign, culminating in a day of solidarity actions in 15 cities and five countries on July 21 st.
The campaign succeeded in breaking through the media blockade, exposing the massacres, and putting US and UN officials on the defensive. It also brought into being an international network of committed people ready to spring into action in a coordinated way. [See “Wave of Protest” report, sent separately.] Now we need to activate and expand our network – to more cities and countries.
Our call is for each city to organize its own Haiti solidarity activity
on or around Friday 9/30 — to be coordinated as a single worldwide mobilization to support Haiti’s struggle for sovereignty, democracy and a just society .
It could be a march, rally, public meeting, vigil, house meeting or civil disobedience – whatever you are able to do — in support of the following demands:
- Stop the Serial Killings and Massacres of the Poor , in one popular neighborhood after another, by UN troops, Haitian National Police and paramilitary mercenaries under police control.
- Restore the Democratically Elected Government of President Aristide
- Free Fr. Jean-Juste, So’ Anne, Prime Minister Neptune – and ALL the Political Prisoners
- End the Brutal US/UN Occupation – Restore Haiti’s Sovereignty – Respect the Will of the Haitian People
Please join us in this important mobilization . Let us know by phone or email what solidarity activity you are planning for September 30 th , so we can build the campaign. Use your contacts in other cities and countries to spread this movement.
For the September 30 th 2005 International Day of Solidarity with the People of Haiti,
Fondasyon Trant Septanm (September 30 th Foundation)
Organizer, US Labor/Human Rights Delegation to Haiti (June-July 2005)
Sister Maureen Duignan
Director, East Bay Sanctuary Covenant
Contact the Sept. 30 th Organizing Committee at 510-847-8657 or firstname.lastname@example.org
* The Fondasyon Trant Septanm statement, calling for an international day of solidarity with the Haitian people on September 30, 2005, can be found in French and Kreyol at www.hayti.net The statement calls for demonstrations in major world cities on that day “to denounce and condemn the dictatorship and the US/UN repression against the poor in Haiti.” You should already have received an English version of the Foundation statement by email.
For more information about the Half-Hour For Haiti Program, the Institute for Justice and Democracy in Haiti or human rights in Haiti, see www.ijdh.org.