Institute for Justice and Democracy in Haiti

Secretary-General Guterres Must Ensure the UN’s Moral Debt to Haiti is Paid

In December 2016, after six years of trying to avoid blame for the cholera epidemic it brought to Haiti in 2010, the United Nations apologized for its role and announced a $00 million New Approach to dealing with cholera. Months later, the fund has only raised about $2 million – from voluntary contributions from South Korea, France Chile, India and Liechtenstein. It is now up to a new Secretary-General, Antonio Guterres, to make sure the New Approach continues.  He “needs to use every bit of skill and good will to compel and cajole member nations and philanthropies to make the cholera campaign succeed — and with it, to settle the United Nations’ moral debt to Haiti.” Part of the editorial is below. Click HERE for the full text. U.N. Accepts Blame but Dodges the Bill in Haiti Editorial Board, The […]

Procedural abuses and increased deportations affect thousands of Haitians

Haitians continue to be deported at a rapid rate from the country at which they arrived seeking refuge and safety. From November through the end of January, ICE deported as many as 2000 non-criminal Haitians who had presented themselves at Mexico-US border crossings since last September 22. The deportations pose many problems; detained Haitians lack access to legal counsel and Creole translators, creating miscommunications and limited opportunity for individuals to claim their rights. Additionally, Haiti is still extremely unstable in the aftermath of Hurricane Matthew, a cholera epidemic and a devastating 2010 earthquake. The number of Haitians crossing the Mexican border is increasing daily, subjecting even more vulnerable individuals to detention, procedural abuses and unstable futures. Part of the article is shown below. Click HERE for the full article. U.S. accelerates deportation of Haitian migrants Daniel González, The Arizona Republic February 17, 2017 A detention officer handed Lemoine […]

Why President Obama Should Support Cholera Victim Compensation

United Nations peacekeepers sparked a deadly cholera epidemic in Haiti in 2010, the first time Haiti had cholera in at least a century. For six years after that, the UN stonewalled and dodged responsibility by hiding behind its immunity, while over 10,000 Haitians died and at least 800,000 became ill from cholera. Before President Obama leaves office, he has a chance to help make this right by committing U.S. funds to the victim compensation fund and cholera elimination plan. This would be more than fair, as it appears that the U.S. was a major reason the UN took the “stonewalling position” to begin with. Part of the article is below. Click HERE for the full text. President Obama Should Make Sure that Haitian Victims of UN-Caused Cholera Are Compensated Mark Weisbrot, The Huffington Post January 12, 2017 Seven years after Haiti’s devastating earthquake, President […]

Was the drug arrest of elected Senator Guy Philippe legal?

Four days before he would be sworn in as a Senator in Haiti and thus gain immunity, 2004 coup leader Guy Philippe was extradited to the U.S. on drug charges. As Philippe is a Haitian national, this move appears to be illegal based on Haiti’s Constitution. This article outlines the corresponding articles of the Constitution and a few treaties relevant to this matter. Part of the article is below. Click HERE for the full text. Haiti – FLASH : Guy Philippe was extradited on what legal basis ? HaitiLibre January 11, 2017 Many wondered about the legality of the extradition of Senator Guy Philippe on Thursday January 5th, great is the confusion in the minds of many including our parliamentarians, what say the texts of laws in Haiti ? First of all, many speak of the agreement signed on 17 […]

NYC Bar Writes Ambassador Power for Cholera Justice

The New York City Bar Association wrote to US Ambassador Samantha Power regarding the US support for the United Nations’ new plan to combat cholera in Haiti, which was detailed before the UN General Assembly on December 1. The plan requires funding from UN member states, of which the US is one of the largest contributors. Part of the letter is below. Click HERE for the full text. December 23, 2016 The Honorable Ambassador Samantha Power U.S. Permanent Representative to the United Nations 799 United Nations Plaza New York, New York 10017   Dear Ambassador Power: We write on behalf of the New York City Bar Association to urge the United States to provide support for the United Nations’ new approach to the cholera epidemic in Haiti before you complete your term as the U.S. Permanent Representative to the United […]

US Ambassador to UN Responds to Ban Ki-moon Cholera Apology

On December 1, 2016 a United Nations General Assembly met to discuss the UN’s new cholera elimination plan for Haiti. At that session, Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon also apologized to the Haitian people and admitted that the UN hadn’t done enough to stop the epidemic. Below is the response to Ban’s statement from the US Representative, Ambassador Isobel Coleman. Ambassador Isobel Coleman U.S. Representative to the UN for UN Management and Reform U.S. Mission to the United Nations New York City December 1, 2016 AS DELIVERED Thank you so much. As the Secretary-General has movingly noted, cholera has had a devastating effect on the Haitian people since it was introduced in Haiti in 2010. Families have lost loved ones, caregivers, and breadwinners. No community has been untouched. There is a clear humanitarian imperative to respond to the epidemic in a robust […]

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