Haitian Solidarity Tribunal: an International Affair

2006-01-29 00:00:00

The event began with the showing of a documentary on the experiences of an
international delegation that visited Haiti in March 2005. Then there
were testimonies in support of the struggle of the Haitian people. Some
examples of these testimonies are:

Nicaragua: Denouncing the use of Nicaraguan troops on Haitian soil.

Ecudaor: Emphasizing the organization of the Ecudorian people and the
repression suffered by Ecuadorian youth. Also, a call for the globalization of rebellion and proposals.

Haiti: A woman who works in rural communities in Haiti emphasized that
women in these areas do not have access to public health. She also said
that MINUSTAH soldiers are raping women with total impunity and that they
are worsening the violation of rights.

Brazil: A Brazilian woman who works in a health centre in the southwest of
the country revealed that they are dealing with illnesses in Haiti that no
longer exist in other parts of the world. She also said that although the
Brazilian and Haitian people have much in common, Brazil is invading Haiti
for its own interests.

Sandra Quinelos from Jubilee South - Brazil: We have a political debt with
Brazil for being the nation of the people who openning the doors of
liberation in the Americas. We also have to cancel the external debt
as it is illegitimate.

Pedro Franco - Dominican Republic: Shared a message from the "Grito de los
Excluidos" expressing their solidarity with the people of Haiti and
demanding the exit of the troops from Haiti. He also said that Dominicans
have an obligation of honour, as they share the same island, to defend
Haitians' rights to autodetermination without intervention from either the
North or the South. He underlined that Dominican elites are the ones who
marginalize Haitians and who try to rewrite history.

Bangladesh: Haiti is not alone. Haiti is in America, Africa and Asia.
We are struggling so that our children can smile.

A comrade from Venezuela: It is necessary to ask Lula to withdraw the
Brazilian troops so that Haiti can solve its own problems and
contradictions. He called for an international day of action for the
liberation of Haiti.

Camille Chalmers - Haiti: Camille underlined two points: the external debt
and the presence of MINUSTAH. On the external debt she said that it is an
old debt that comes from 1825 when France obliged Haiti to compensate
large landowners for the freed slaves. She said that in 2005 $80 million
were paid to the debt, thus representing the principal priority of the
Haitian government. During the 80s and the 90s, Haiti invested double in
the debt than it did in health. She demanded the immediate cancelation of
the debt. As for the presence of MINUSTAH, she underlined the gravity of
the participation of Latin American governments. The crisis in Haiti is a
product of neoliberal policies. The MINUSTAH mission, the unarming of the
regular forces, the preparation for the democratic elections and security
have been a total failure. $26 million have been spent since the
beginning of the occupation and only 250 arms have been recuperated. She
clarified that the need to create South-South solidarity as Brazil and
Argentina have done in the areas of public health, literacy and reforestation.

Translation Amanda Procter