By Staff, Defend Haiti | Meagan Fitzpatrick and Staff, CBC News Online | Sheila Dabu Nonato, National Post. Canada Foreign Aid Minister Bev Oda — the woman responsible for the relocation of hundreds of thousands from the tent camps on Champs de Mars, Port-au-Prince, Haiti — has resigned. She was replaced by Julian Fantino, a former policeman risen to the ranks of police chief, Member of Parliament, and Defense Minister. Mr. Fantino has been followed in every political post by allegations of corruption.
By Kim-Jenna Jurriaans, IPS | UPDATE from Haiti Chery. The United Nations is increasingly hiring Private Military and Security Companies (PMSCs) for its missions across the world, raising concerns over the use of firms known for participation in human rights abuses, as well as an overall lack of accountability structures governing these contractors within the U.N. system. UPDATE 1: DynCorp boasts of having trained 400 “Haitian police” and is awarded a $48.6 million contract to insert 100 contractors and 10 advisors into the “UN police force” in Haiti.
By Staff, Radio Metropole | Translation and editorial comment by Dady Chery, Haiti Chery. With the recent reactivation of the defunct 2005 Council of Economic and Social Development (Conseil de Développement Economique et Social), Haiti establishes a permanent dictatorship — with elections. The CESD replaces the Interim Commission for Haiti Reconstruction (ICHR). (English | French)
PRESS RELEASE, UN via RadioTV Caraibes | Translation by Dady Chery, Haiti Chery. The heads of the UN peacekeeping missions forces in the Congo (MONUSCO), Haiti (MINUSTAH) and South Sudan (MISNUSS) said today to keep in mind that these operations have broad mandates: from classical peacekeeping to conflict mitigation, and even the fight against cholera. (English | French)
By Staff (sgl/emw/mgt/jrr) Prensa Latina | Editorial comment by Dady Chery, Haiti Chery. At a meeting of the Union of South American Nations (UNASUR), Member countries discussed a timetable for South America’s gradual military withdrawal from MINUSTAH. But the withdrawal plan so far looks more like one for a gradual replacement of Latin American troops with Asian and African troops.
By Roberson Alphonse, Le Nouvelliste | Translation and editorial comment by Dady Chery, Haiti Chery. According to Dieuseul Anglade, director of the Office of Mines and Energy in Haiti (Bureau des Mines et de l’Energie, BME), the outlook is encouraging, and during the negotiations for exploitation, the Haitian state will keep close watch to ensure that the citizens of Haiti benefit from the country’s mineral wealth. Meanwhile, the region’s mayors have been dismissed, depriving the citizens of a voice in their local government, and land prices have skyrocketed. (English | French)
By staff, AHP | Translation by Dady Chery, Haiti Chery | AlJazeera, YouTube. Nineteen year-old Johnny Jean from Port-Salut was heard on Thursday May 10, 2012 by Uruguayan Judge Guido Alejandro. Jean identified in court the soldiers he accuses of having raped him in a Port Salut base of the United Nations Stabilisation Mission in Haiti (MINUSTAH). (English | French)
By Staff (EJ), Radio Metropole | Translation and editorial comment by Dady Chery, Haiti Chery. The mandates of one third of the Haitian Senate and various municipal executives expired in mid-January 2012, and the mandate of another third of the Senate expired on May 8. Mayors and local officials have been dictatorially replaced by presidential decree, and no administrative provision has been made to assemble a new electoral body to organize new elections so as to replace the elected parliamentarians whose terms have expired. (English | French)
By Dady Chery, Haiti Chery. Plans are under way for Canadian and US corporations to mine Haiti’s northeast area near Caracol, which has been discovered to contain a wealth of silver and gold, in addition to copper. As in the Dominican Republic’s Pueblo Viejo project, construction of the mines will involve dynamiting of mountains, and the ore will be extracted by an opencast (or open-pit) mining process that contaminates large volumes of water with cyanide. UPDATES: Attempts to issue mining permits to the US’ VCS Mining LLC and Canada’s SOMINE SA, without any environmental impact assessment (EIA) were thwarted by Haiti’s Senate in January 2013. Plans to dredge a deep-sea port in the pristine Bay of Fort Liberte were scrapped in April 2014.
By Dady Chery, Haiti Chery (English) | Renaud Piarroux and Claire Hedon, Priorite Sante (French). Contrary to the daily predictions of mayhem from the mainstream press about Haiti’s cholera epidemic, Dr. Renaud Piarroux, who has access to up-to-date medical information and laboratory results about the epidemic, says it is waning and now exists only as a series of clusters in the North of the country. Based on his extensive experience in controlling epidemics of tropical diseases, he adds that cholera could be completely eradicated from Haiti in a few months, but not by the oral vaccination campaign promoted by Haiti’s Ministry of Public Health and Population. (English | French)
By Tiken Jah Fakoly, You Tube (courtesy of KZoubeidi) | Wikipedia (biography) | Ados (lyrics) | Introduction by Dady Chery, Haiti Chery. Tiken Jah Fakoly is a musician who originates from the Ivory Coast and describes his mission as being “to wake up the consciences.” His lyrics speak for the voiceless. This fantastic song came to Haiti Chery’s attention via reader HenryG, in response to news of Haiti’s vaccine trial on poor women and children, along with the message “MINUSTAH (THE NGO TRASH CAN!!!)”. Indeed: we get it. It’s all very clear.
By Dady Chery, Haiti Chery. The epidemiological information about Haiti’s cholera outbreak is brought together with up-to-date molecular biology evidence, in an article by Dr. Renaud Piarroux and his colleagues, to make an ironclad scientific case about a United Nations (UN) MINUSTAH Nepalese base being the source of Haiti’s cholera contamination. The epidemic is attributed directly to the inadequate medical surveillance of 1,280 UN personnel who were taken to Nepal to train during an epidemic and the unsanitary practices at the base to which they came, upriver from the towns of St. Marc and Mirebalais, Haiti.
By Rachelle Charlier Doucet, AlterPresse | Translation and editorial comment by Dady Chery, Haiti Chery. A massive industrial park is scheduled to open in the Caracol Bay area of Haiti, although no plan is in place to mitigate the park’s impact on a region that has been proposed as a World Heritage Site for its ecological, historical, and archaeological importance. The park’s manufacturing and textile dyeing alone will require pumping 6,000 cubic meters of water daily from the groundwater and ejecting toxic wastewater into the Trou du Nord River and, ultimately, Caracol Bay. Electricity will be produced from oil, resulting in heavy and toxic wastes. Construction of 5,000 homes for a predicted migration of 30,000 to 300,000 people is expected to result in bantustanization of the area and neighboring communities. (English | French)
By Haitian Speaker of the Senate and Speaker of the Chamber of Deputies, AlterPresse | Translated by Dady Chery, Haiti Chery. “You stood up in 1804, 1934, 1986 and 1990. Stand up today for respect for the preamble to the 1987 Constitution and respect for the laws passed by Parliament! Stand up and call for the President of the Republic to respect his oath and faithfully follow the Constitution and the laws of the Republic! Stand up to back democratic gains, and demand free and fair elections within the time prescribed by the law and the Constitution!” – Joint statement from Simon Dieuseul Desras and Levaillant Louis-Jeune.