“It’s time for Haitian Parliament to void the Status of Force Agreement (SOFA) between Haiti and MINUSTAH signed by the unconstitutional and unelected Haiti officials in 2004 and subject those in the UN who have prostituted and sodomized our children and poisoned our water system to appropriate national and international courts and justice standards. Deportation and MINUSTAH withdrawal is NOT enough. Innocent Haitians have a human right to a court hearing, trial and reparations for these gross and depraved UN injustices. The UN cannot be above the law. The UN was not conceived and established as a colonizing power or a proxy for enslavers with blanket immunity and impunity for rape, spread of contaminable diseases and crimes against humanity. Justice for Haiti for these gross wrongdoings cannot be left at the DISCRETION of its United Nation victimizers.”
— Ezili Dantò of HLLN********
New photogallery photos
Zili Dlo – Clean water is life and health and solution to cholera. Support clean water for everyone in Haiti. (More Zili Dlo photos on Facebook and Flickr. FANMVO art work for Zili Dlo)********
Book an appearance to support Ezili Dantò/HLLN work and Zili Dlo. Now touring (Sept. 19 to end of Oct, 2011)- The Story of Janjak, Haiti’s founding father: The Greatest Hero who ever Lived and the women who influenced him by Ezili Dantò – http://bit.ly/d8psxN
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The Literal and Systemic Rape of Haiti: Uruguay must make its investigation public, its punishment public, its reparation swift and just
Acknowledging the damage is irreparable, Uruguayan President Jose Mujica apologized to Haiti for the kidnapping off the streets of Haiti and gang rape and abuse of a Haitian teen by four Uruguayan U.N. “soldiers”. The incident was captured on a cellphone camera of one of the soldiers and made public to journalists by the Haitians in the town of Port Salut who found it. ( U.N. Peacekeepers Accused of Sexually Assaulting Haitian Teen, ABC News. )
It seems at least one country with UN/MINUSTAH in Haiti still has some conscience, unlike most of the US media and the two US envoys – Paul Farmer, Bill Clinton – from the UN to Haiti. (See, Paul Farmer is not a God but the face of the UN/USAID/World Bank , US False Benevolence ; I Pay this Price for You; History Matters: Time to remember Kandyo, the Malfini and Mongoose by Ezili Dantò; Zili Dlo–Clean water is health, life and the simple solution to cholera-ravaged Haiti and More photos for Cholera in Mirebalais Haiti at Ezili HLLN website; and A message to Paul Farmer, the Senate, Dobbins & Francois, Jan. 30. 2010 .)
Uruguay’s Defense Minister Eleuterio Fernandez Huidobro said members of their armed forces are prohibited from “referring to this episode as a joke, since the use of that word is SHAMEFUL for any armed forces’ official because here there was no joke, but a serious aggression against a person.”
I thought to see only the usual UN lies and obfuscations about how Haitians are responsible for their own victimization. Uruguay seems different. Hopefully they won’t allow the UN and US aggressors to force them to sweep this under the rug as the UN has done for over seven years of slaughters, sexual assaults and bringing the cholera plague to Haiti.
But it is good and no small example for those of us who have been bringing complaints against the UN for sexual abuse and wrongful killing of Haitians for over seven years without any UN honcho or country in Haiti accepting responsibility, that “Uruguay’s president has apologized for the “outrage” carried out by peacekeepers accused of sexually assaulting a young Haitian man and vowed the “maximum penalty” for anyone found guilty.” ( Uruguay apologizes over alleged Haiti sex assault and Uruguay sacks UN official in Haiti sex attack probe .)
Before the commander was fired by the Defense Minister, it was reported that the “Uruguayan Navy Lieutenant Nicolas Casariego, the local base commander, said that the video was real, but called the abuse in the video “a game, a joke,” and said it was not sexual in nature.” The commander appeared to have been trying to justify the soldiers criminal actions by saying the teen had insulted the soldiers and they were only “bullying him.” (See, Peacekeepers in Haiti face sex attack inquiry by Ansel Hetz, Sept. 3, 2011, Aljazeera)
Speaking about the UN Uruguay contingent, representatives for the townspeople have said:
“They are engaged…in prostitution, they have, inside their base, sex with disadvantaged children, they take advantage of the situation of poverty. And the worst is that they take pictures of the naked children on their phones to show other soldiers.”
Like the UN commander, the UN itself denied the allegations in whole and I wrote about their quick lies thus:
“Immediately, as per usual, a U.N. ‘preliminary investigation’ set the normal unconscionable UN tone, finding that the UN soldiers did not sexually abuse the Haitian teen. Miami Herald and Huffington Post, for example, along with other media took to parroting the UN apologists that this could have been “a prank,” “a bad joke,” despite the video being authenticated, despite the forced and criminal abduction, the history of the UN in Haiti and the Haiti residents’ testimonies – all with racist indifference, downplaying the horrific, barbaric abuse of military power. Instead of using the correct word for the alleged behavior of the UN troops in questions, that the teen was KIDNNAPPED and gang raped by these depraved UN soldiers, all media reporting this so far, say something similar, that the alleged victim was “snatched by a soldier outside the front gate of a U.N. base and was taken inside. Those words: “kidnapped,” “criminal,” “corrupt” and “gang” seemed used by the UN, US, international community and the mainstream media only to refer to Haiti’s poor.” — Ezili Dantò of HLLN (See also, UN Peacekeepers and Humanitarian Aid Workers raping, molesting and abusing Haitian
But, Defense Minister, Fernandez Huidobro not only fired the UN navy commander in Haiti over the incident, forbid Uruguayan armed forces from calling the incident “a game” or “a joke” but then said the Uruguayan investigation will “go to the bone.” More heartening, in comments on the ministry’s website, Fernandez Huidobro also said that Uruguay “should apologize as urgently as possible to the people and government of Haiti, give reparations to the victim of these abhorrent acts, be exhaustive in its investigation and apply the maximum imaginable sanction against those responsible.” (Uruguay apologizes to Haiti for alleged sex abuse By RAUL O. GARCES, Associated Press .)
In our experience at HLLN, when the UN says it will investigate, that’s usually a lie or the investigation, if it is done, is kept from the Haitian public. (See, HLLN Letter to the UN asking for investigative reports on UN rape by Ezili Dantò, Nov. 9, 2009 http://bit.ly/41korO )
Uruguay must make its investigation public, its punishment public, its reparation swift and just and not be influenced by the Obama/Clinton administration whose only concern is keeping US foot on Haitian soil to fleece Haiti’s riches for US big business, the NGOs and as territorial zone to block Cuba and Venezuela from using the assets of their country for the benefit of their own citizens.As we’ve urged since the beginning when this Bush regime change started in 2004 and the US got the UN to be its proxy military arm in Haiti, its way past time the US and UN were out of Haiti. Haitians are not at war, this occupation is racist, about false benevolence, forced assimilation and Western tyranny.
The unrest that took down Haiti’s democratically elected government in 2004 and that is the excuse for the UN presence in Haiti today was financed and orchestrated by the United States, France and Canada. That Brazil is making preparations to leave is one step in the right directions. Haiti cannot be occupied for the benefit of the US corporatocracy and NGOs. The US/MINUTAH occupying force needs to leave Haiti…YESTERDAY and the US, UN, France and Canada provide reparation for crime against humanity and the personal and environmental damage their cannabalistic occupation have wrought on the peaceful masses of Haiti. “(See, Port-Salut Demands Withdraw of MINUSTAH for Sexual Abuse and Prostitution of Minors ; Rapport du RNDDH sur le viol de l’adolescent de Port-Salut ; Shock video of UN soldiers apparently raping a Haitian teenager raises questions about why these ‘peacekeepers’ are there at all.)
It’s time for Haitian Parliament to void the Status of Force Agreement (SOFA) between Haiti and MINUSTAH signed by the unconstitutional and unelected Haiti officials in 2004 and subject those in the UN who have prostituted and sodomized our children and poisoned our water system to appropriate national and international courts and justice standards. Deportation and MINUSTAH withdrawal is NOT enough. Innocent Haitians have a human right to a court hearing, trial and reparations for these gross and depraved UN injustices.
The UN cannot be above the law. The UN was not conceived and established as a colonizing power or a proxy for enslavers with blanket immunity and impunity for rape, spread of contaminable diseases and crimes against humanity. Justice for Haiti for these gross wrongdoings cannot be left at the DISCRETION of its United Nation victimizers.
Ezili Dantò of HLLN
Trash from the UN base dumped on the coast
of Port Salut [Ansel Herz]– Source: Peacekeepers in Haiti face sex attack inquiry by Ansel Hetz, Sept. 3, 2011, Aljazeera
MORE BACKGROUND for this post
– Port-Salut Demands Withdraw of MINUSTAH for Sexual Abuse and Prostitution of Minors, August 14, 2011 , Source: DefendHaiti
– Brazil plans Haiti peacekeeping withdrawal, says Amorim
– Uruguay apologizes over alleged Haiti sex assault
http://bit.ly/oZ3JTK | (AFP) – Sept. 7, 2011
– Uruguay apologizes over alleged rape by U.N. peacekeepers
By Malena Castaldi | http://reut.rs/obomno | Sep 6, 2011
– UN, Haiti, Uruguay probe sexual assault By EDITH M. LEDERER, Sept. 6, 2011,
PORT-SALUT, Haiti – In a press release, the Committee for the Research, Development and Organization of Port-Salut (CREDOP) denounced the sexual abuse of minors and prostitution of a United Nations Stabilization Mission in Haiti (MINUSTAH) contingent stationed in the town of Port-Salut.
In the note, CREDOP called an alert to the public about the behavior of the MINUSTAH soldiers which they characterized as “contemptuous, insulting, disrespectful and dishonest to the citizens and environment of Port-Salut.”
Contacted by the Haiti Press Network (HPN) /* */ , Ernso Valentin, a CREDOP official said the local contingent, consisting mostly of Uruguayan soldiers were guilty of various abuses.
“They are engaged,” Valentin says, “in prostitution, they have, inside their base, sex with disadvantaged children, they take advantage of the situation of poverty. And the worst is that they take pictures of the naked children on their phones to show other soldiers.”
Moreover in the CREDOP press release, they criticizes the contingent to have created a system of sewage disposal which emit an offensive odor in the area. Their criticism is also made to lay waste and garbage around the coast and the civil aviation Port salvation.
The soldiers of MINUSTAH in this area are also accused of antisocial practices, enjoying the smoking of marijuana in the presence of minors.
“Outrageous and disgusting,” the inhabitants of Port-Salut have called on Haitian authorities to take steps to withdraw the contingent from the city.
CREDOP has announced protests and movements to make their voices heard. Young people, victims of these abuses have threatened to organize a movement of mass suicide if their demands are not taken into account.
Brazilian peacekeepers in a a vehicle talk to Haitian children in Port-au-Prince Brazilian troops are the mainstay of the peacekeeping operation
Brazil plans to start withdrawing troops from the UN peacekeeping mission it leads in Haiti, Defence Minister Celso Amorim has said.
The gradual reduction would be co-ordinated with the UN and other South American nations with troops in Haiti.
“We can’t have a disorganised exit that creates a situation of chaos,” Mr Amorim told the BBC.
Mr Amorim said the security situation in Haiti had substantially improved since the mission began in 2004.
He noted that there had been two democratic elections since the force was deployed.
“Political science manuals teach that the second election shows that democracy has been established,” Mr Amorim said.
“In the medium and long term, it is not good for Haiti and it is not good for those who are there that the mission be perpetuated,” he added.
But Mr Amorim said no timetable had been drawn up for the reduction and eventual withdrawal of peacekeeping troops.
And he said the Brazilian draw-down would initially be limited, as Brazilian troops had responsibility for the capital, Port-au-Prince.
Brazilian defence minister Celso Amorim Mr Amorim says there will be no rush to exit Haiti
There are more than 2,000 Brazilian troops in Haiti, out of a total UN force of around 12,000.
Brazil’s leadership of the UN force has been seen as a test of its ambition to play a greater role in regional security as it seeks a permanent seat on the UN Security Council.
The peacekeepers were brought in to Haiti to restore order following the overthrow of President Jean-Bertrand Aristide in 2004.
The force was expanded after the devastating earthquake in January 2010, which killed more than 200,000 people and left the capital, Port-au-Prince in ruins.
But the UN mission has been dogged by controversy.
Last year there were widespread protests after Nepalese peacekeepers were accused of being the source of a cholera outbreak that killed more than 6,000 Haitians.
Just last week, Uruguayan peacekeepers were accused of raping an 18-year-old Haitian man after a video of the alleged incident circulated on the internet.
Five Uruguayan marines are to face trial for the alleged assault, and the Uruguayan government has promised “maximum penalties” if they are found guilty.
Mr Amorim said Brazil’s desire to begin withdrawing troops was not related to the allegations against the Uruguayans, which have provoked outrage in Haiti.
Haitian President Michel Martelly said the incident had “revolted the conscience of the nation”.
President Martelly has acknowledged that Haiti still needs the UN peacekeepers, but wants their security role reduced and eventually replaced by a Haitian force.
He is still struggling to form a government, five months after winning power in a UN-backed election.
(AFP) – Sept. 7, 2011
MONTEVIDEO — Uruguay’s president has apologized for the “outrage” carried out by peacekeepers accused of sexually assaulting a young Haitian man and vowed the “maximum penalty” for anyone found guilty.
The soldiers, who were based in southern Haiti, stand accused of attacking an 18-year-old man in the small coastal town of Port-Salut. Video footage of the alleged attack on a Uruguayan base has been circulated on the Internet.
“I come at this terrible time to offer you and the dear and heroic people of Haiti my apologies for the outrage that some soldiers of my country committed,” Uruguay’s President Jose Mujica said in a letter released late Tuesday.
“I share your sadness, which I feel as my own,” he said, adding that authorities would investigate the matter and apply the “maximum penalty” to those responsible.
Uruguay’s defense minister had earlier admitted that the incident had caused “a lot of damage” to the armed forces, which provide around 2,400 peacekeepers worldwide, mostly in Haiti and the Democratic Republic of Congo.
The five peacekeepers accused of sexual assault are to be sent home this week, Defense Minister Eleuterio Fernandez Huidobro said.
The Uruguayan government has opened a case in the matter, as peacekeepers must be tried in their home country for any crimes allegedly committed during their deployments abroad.
Montevideo has also sacked a navy commander with the UN mission in Haiti over the incident.
Haitian President Michel Martelly has condemned the alleged attack and demanded a detailed report on the exact circumstances of the incident, according to his office.
Martelly has also requested a meeting between Haitian officials and UN mission staff so that “measures can immediately be taken to ensure that such acts do not reoccur,” his office said in a statement.
On Monday, hundreds of people demonstrated in Port-Salut to demand justice for the alleged victim, while some Haitians have asked for the UN mission — in the country since 2004 — to be shut down.
The UN mission — formed to help maintain peace after chaos erupted at the end of Jean-Bertrand Aristide’s presidency — has also come under fire after a cholera outbreak that could have been transmitted by Nepalese peacekeepers.
By Malena Castaldi | http://reut.rs/obomno
MONTEVIDEO | Tue Sep 6, 2011
(Reuters) – Uruguayan President Jose Mujica apologized to Haitian President Michel Martelly over the alleged rape of an 18-year-old Haitian man by Uruguayan U.N. peacekeeping troops in the poor Caribbean state, Uruguay’s government said on Tuesday.
Public outrage in earthquake-ravaged Haiti has surged over a video shot by a cellphone camera and circulating on the Internet that shows laughing Uruguayan marines pinning the young Haitian face down on a mattress and apparently assaulting him sexually.
“We apologize for the abuse that some soldiers of my country perpetrated,” Mujica wrote in a letter to Martelly.
“Although the damage is irreparable, have the certainty that we will investigate thoroughly and apply the harshest sanctions against those responsible,” Mujica said.
He also apologized on behalf of the country’s armed forces, which he said, where humiliated by “the criminal and embarrassing behavior by a few” soldiers.
Defense Minister Eleuterio Fernandez Huidobro, who also signed the letter, said earlier that Uruguay would compensate the victim.
The alleged victim, Johnny Jean, and his mother, Rose Marie Jean, told Haitian radio stations he had been raped by Uruguayan marines and provided testimony to a judge in the southern town of Port-Salut, where the incident allegedly took place on July 28.
Martelly has said the perpetrators of what he called “a collective rape carried out against a young Haitian” would not go unpunished.
Haitian authorities, the U.N. Mission in Haiti and Uruguay’s Defense Ministry launched an investigation into the video. The four troops suspected of being involved have been detained and Uruguay’s Navy has replaced the head of its naval contingent with the U.N. peacekeeping mission in Haiti.
In a preliminary report, the U.N. ruled out that Jean was raped but said blue-helmet peacekeepers broke rules when they allowed a civilian to enter a military camp.
U.N. peacekeepers in Haiti have faced public anger before, especially over allegations that Nepalese U.N. troops brought a deadly cholera epidemic to the country after their camp latrines contaminated a local river. This triggered riots last year against the 12,000-strong U.N. peacekeeping contingent.
The current U.N. peacekeeping mission in Haiti, known as MINUSTAH, was established by the U.N. Security Council in 2004 and has been helping Haiti’s short-staffed and ill-equipped police to maintain security in the volatile Caribbean state, especially during elections plagued by fraud and violence.
Defense and foreign ministers from nations that make up MINUSTAH are scheduled to meet in Montevideo on Thursday to discuss a gradual troop pullback from Haiti.
(Writing by Luis Andres Henao; editing by Anthony Boadle and Christopher Wilson)
By EDITH M. LEDERER, Sept. 6, 2011, Miami Herald
UNITED NATIONS — The United Nations, Haiti and Uruguay are investigating allegations that U.N. peacekeepers from Uruguay sexually abused an 18-year-old Haitian man, the United Nations said Tuesday.
U.N. deputy spokesman Eduardo del Buey told reporters that the five alleged perpetrators have been confined to barracks pending the outcome of the three investigations.
The alleged attack occurred on July 20 but only became public last week when a video taken by cell phone was circulated and the U.N. announced an investigation. The Uruguayan military has called the incident at the peacekeepers’ base in Port-Salut on Haiti’s south coast a prank that got out of hand and says a preliminary U.N. investigation shows no evidence of rape.
“If the investigations prove that the allegations are true,” del Buey said, “we would expect that these people be prosecuted in the full extent of the law.”
In a statement Sunday, the Uruguayan defense ministry said a U.N. preliminary investigation had found that the men did not sexually abuse the Haitian teen but that they committed misconduct by allowing a civilian into their barracks and could face severe penalties.
Uruguayan Defense Minister Eleuterio Fernandez Huidobro took a tougher line Tuesday, promising that the investigation will go down “to the bone.”
In comments on the Defense Ministry’s website, he said Uruguay “should apologize as urgently as possible to the people and government of Haiti, give reparations to the victim of these abhorrent acts, be exhaustive in its investigation and apply the maximum imaginable sanction against those responsible.”
Fernandez Huidobro stressed that members of the armed forces are prohibited from “referring to this episode as a joke, since the use of that word is shameful for any armed forces’ official because here there was no joke, but a serious aggression against a person.”
The video of the encounter is clearly sexual in nature. However, a U.N. spokeswoman in Haiti, Eliane Nabaa, said the U.N. had not come to any conclusions – a view echoed by del Buey who said “we are waiting to see what the outcome of the investigations are.”
Dr. Clifford Gauthier, a physician who examined the young man a month after the alleged attack, told the AP in Haiti that he found evidence that was consistent with signs of sexual abuse even five weeks after the attack. He said he asked the young man why he waited so long for treatment and didn’t get an answer.
While allegations of abuse have dogged U.N. peacekeeping missions since their inception over 50 years ago, the issue was thrust into the spotlight after the United Nations found in early 2005 that peacekeepers in Congo had sex with Congolese women and girls, usually in exchange for food or small sums of money.
The U.N. peacekeeping department instituted a “zero tolerance” policy against sexual abuse, a new code of conduct for its more than 110,000 peacekeepers deployed around the world and new training for officers and all U.N. personnel. Nonetheless, allegations of sexual abuse persist in Congo and elsewhere.
Nigel Fisher, the U.N. deputy envoy in Haiti, told the AP on Tuesday that all U.N. employees in the country had been told that “you have to behave with the best comportment at all times, and I don’t care what it is, whether it’s walking the streets, whether it’s driving properly, or behavior in the camps.”
The United Nations doesn’t have the authority to prosecute those accused of sexual abuse but it has urged countries that deployed the troops to pursue legal action against alleged perpetrators.
“We’re very gratified with reports that we got from the Uruguayan Defense Ministry that they would take appropriate action if the allegations are proven to be true,” del Buey said.
Haitian President Michel Martelly has “vigorously condemned” the alleged assault of the young Haitian, calling it an “act that revolts the national conscience.” Several hundred Haitians demonstrated in Port-Salut on Monday, calling for reparations for the young man.
Protests, though smaller, continued Tuesday. About 50 people gathered in front of Parliament in downtown Port-au-Prince to press for the U.N.’s ouster.
The allegation threatened to worsen the reputation of the U.N. in Haiti which is viewed by many Haitians as an occupying force. Many Haitians are still angry over a cholera outbreak that was inadvertently brought to the country by peacekeepers from Nepal last year.
Del Buey was asked whether in light of the video, the U.N. was retracting its statement on Aug. 18 that the allegations of sexual abuse were unfounded.
“It’s not being retracted,” he said. “We did not comment on the video because … we didn’t know where the video came from, who took it. We don’t have a sort of chain of evidence to show that the video was bona fide.”
“That video is now part of the court case that the family is bringing against the Haitian prosecutor, and the family is bringing against the five perpetrators. So the video is something that we would not like to comment on becase it is evidence in an ongoing investigation,” he said.
Forwarded by Ezili’s Haitian Lawyers Leadership Network (HLLN)
Book an appearance to support Ezili Dantò/HLLN work and Zili Dlo.
Now touring (Sept. 19 to end of Oct, 2011)- The Story of Janjak, Haiti’s founding father: The Greatest Hero who ever Lived and the women who influenced him by Ezili Dantò – http://bit.ly/d8psxN
Jean Jacques Dessalines – The women who influenced him, his ideals and legacy remembered. (Born, September 20, 1758, assassinated Oct. 17, 1806) http://bit.ly/d8psxN
New photogallery photos
Zili Dlo – Clean water is life and health and solution to cholera. Support clean water for everyone in Haiti – http://bit.ly/pBvWcl . (More Zili Dlo photos on Facebook and Flickr. FANMVO art work for Zili Dlo)
Help give voice to the voiceless in Haiti, share, repost and circulate Ezili Dantò/HLLN posts and writings. Men anpil chay pa lou – Many hands make light a heavy load