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Related Categories: International | Racial Justice
Funeral for Killed Protestor, as protests continue in Haiti
by AHP
Friday Jan 23rd, 2004 10:39 AM
Port-au-Prince, January 22, 2004 -(AHP)-The funeral of Louvoi Petit, the Lavalas activist who died as a result of torture at the hands of demonstrators from the political coalition of the 184 will be held Friday.
Agence Haitienne de Presse
Agence Haitienne Presse is an indepedent news agency based in Haiti
http://www.ahphaiti.org to see originals in French

AHP News January 22, 2004 - English translation (Unofficial)

------------------------------------------------------------------------
The funeral for the Lavalas activist beaten to death during an opposition
demonstration will be held Friday at Saint Anne's Church in Port-au-Prince
------------------------------------------------------------------------
Port-au-Prince, January 22, 2004 -(AHP)-The funeral of Louvoi Petit, the
Lavalas activist who died as a result of torture at the hands of demonstrators
from the political coalition of the 184 will be held Friday at the Eglise
Sainte-Anne in Port-au-Prince.

Mr. Petit was pelted with rocks and beaten with sticks and iron bars before
being dumped into a ditch during a demonstration by the Group of 184 on January
7, 2004.

The opposition activists armed with shovels then went looking for him to
finish him off.

This macabre scene, which was shown on television, provoked strong feelings
in Haiti as well as abroad.

The leaders of the opposition, who initially justified the killing by saying
he was a delinquent and an armed Lavalas chimè who tried to infiltrate their
demonstration, later tried to claim him as one of their own, after having
realized the seriousness of the case.

To that effect, opposition leaders have said that he was actually a student,
then they said he was a member of the group of 184 who was attacked, they
said, right at the heart of their demonstration, by members of Lavalas Populist
Organizations.

AHP January 22, 2004 4:40 PM

------------------------------------------------------------------------
More than 10,000 people including many students take part in a peaceful march
in support of education and knowledge at the initiative of two student
organizations
------------------------------------------------------------------------
Port-au-Prince, January 22, 2004 -(AHP)- Several thousand people, including
university students, public high school students and leaders of political
parties demonstrated this Thursday in the streets of Port-au-Prince to call for the
re-opening of schools and university departments across the country.

The demonstration was organized at the initiative of two student
organizations, FELUH (The Federation of Students for the Liberation of the State
University of Haiti, and ACEH (Citizen Action of Haitian Students).

The demonstrators, who were greeted by many large business merchants in the
central business district, intended to protest against the campaign to close
the schools launched by leaders of the Political Platform of the 184 as part of
their movement to obtain the ouster of the elected authorities.

setting forth from the Faculty of Ethnology in the center of the capital,
they marched down many streets of the city, chanting slogans calling for schools
to be open.

" Apaid, you cause schools to be set on fire but you call me a chimè",
chanted the demonstrators. They asked the students and political leaders active in
the battle against the schools to depoliticize learning and give a chance to
the students who wish to take classes.

They denounced the fact that the facilities of several departments of
state-run universities are serving today as bases from which political leaders carry
out their anti-government campaign.

Demonstrators indicated that if the opposition persists in using violent
means to force the schools to remain closed, it might as well start building
prisons, because without schools, the country can produce only delinquents.

Students from several public elementary and high schools have asked officials
of the Ministry for National Education to go ahead with the sanctions they
announced at the beginning of the week against teachers and school principals
who are playing cat and mouse in an effort to prevent the re-opening of the
schools.

They also asked officials of the office of the rector at the State University
to pull themselves together and talk sense into the students who do not
hesitate to assault school children and throw stones at schools.

For parents, the big question is to learn whether the directors of private
schools and colleges accused of complicity with the Group of 184 are going to
reimburse the money they have already paid for the school year.

Several parents proceeded to denounce a campaign of insults and obscenities
broadcast over the airwaves. "Our children need to hear a different sort of
speech", they said.

Students from INAGHEI who need to pass courses in order to get their diplomas
also demonstrated their displeasure Wednesday at the paralysis of activities
at the university.

They appealed to their classmates to be reasonable in order to allow them to
achieve their dreams.

Many members of Populist Organizations joined in the demonstration to show
support for students who are concerned about the future of the country;s
children.

The leader of the organization Jeunesse Pouvoir Populaire (Populist Youth
Power) René Civil, reminded members of the opposition coalition that school
activities should go on outside the world of politics.

Public high school students in Port-au-Prince announced plans to demonstrate
on Friday January 23rd to call for the resumption of classes at the public
high schools so that they can be ready for the official examinations.

They asked all parents and students who are not involved in the campaign
against classes to support that march.

Hundreds of thousands of Fanmi Lavalas supporters demonstrated Wednesday in
Port-au-Prince to call for respect for the five year term in office of
President Aristide.

The demonstration in favor of peace and reconciliation also aimed at asking
the leaders of the opposition political platform to put an end to their
campaign to shut down the schools that has been going on for more than two weeks.

AHP January 22, 2004 2:30 PM

------------------------------------------------------------------------
An opposition demonstration is blocked by the police who cite legal
justifications for their action
------------------------------------------------------------------------
Port-au-Prince, January 22, 2004 -(AHP)- An anti-government demonstration
planned for Wednesday by doctors and students at the School of Medicine was
blocked by the police, who said they legitimate reasons for doing so.

The spokesperson for the doctors, Ernest Harrisson, said that the authorities
blocked the demonstration because they said they were unable to contact the
organizers prior to the march in order to negotiate with them the route to be
followed in the demonstration.

M. Harrison said he is determined to demonstrate to call for the departure of
the elected authorities.

he asked all students who belong to the anti-government movement to take part
in the demonstration planned for Friday by the opposition platform to call
for the departure of the current government and the closing of schools until the
opposition takes power.

The police also used tear gas to disperse groups of members of Populist
Organizations who were massed not far from the School of Medicine.

Their gathering had not been communicated to the police.

AHP January 22, 2004 3:20 PM

------------------------------------------------------------------------
Haïti/politics: A ray of hope following the meeting in the Bahamas, according
to the Canadian Minister of Foreign affairs
------------------------------------------------------------------------
Port-au-Prince, January 22, 2004 -(AHP)- The leaders of the opposition who
participated in a two day meeting in the Bahamas with CARICOM leaders about the
situation in Haiti returned home Wednesday.

An opposition spokesperson, Victor Benoît, said that the opposition presented
an overview of the situation in Haiti, characterizd by human rights
violations, he said.

"The opposition does not intend to negotiate with Fanmi Lavalas", said Victor
Benoit, describing the effort by CARICOM as old hat.

American and Canadian officials attended the meeting as observers.

Canadian Foreign affairs Minister Bill Graham, who followed the discussions
declared that there was a ray of hope.

According to Bill Graham, progress was achieved toward reaching a negotiated
solution to the crisis that has resulted in several weeks of violent
demonstrations in Haiti.

Mr. Graham reiterated his country's support for a special mission of the
Organization of American States (OAS) to strengthen democracy in Haiti, he said.

Canada also suggested that the OAS established a permanent monitoring mission
to improve security in the country.

For his part, a member of the private sector belonging to the opposition,
Lyonel Délatour told the Miami Herald that this is an important opportunity to
exchange points of view on the situation in Haiti.

The two days of talks were led by the Prime Ministers of the Bahamas, Perry
Christie, of Jamaica, Mr. P.J. Patterson , and from Trinidad &Tobago, Mr.
Patrick Manning in the presence of American and Canadian observers as well as the
OAS Assistant Secretary General, Luigi Einaudi and Amb. Colin Granderson.

AHP January 22, 2004 11:00 AM


*** Activities resumed at the Port-au-Prince International Airport following
a work stoppage observed by air controllers who were protesting the suspension
due to budgetary constraints of certain expenses that had been allowed them.

***Radio Kiskeya, one of the eight radio stations sabotaged last week by
unidentified individuals, resumed broadcasting this Thursday.

Several other stations severely affected, including Telé Timoun and Radio Plus have yet to resume broadcasting.
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