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Haiti - Diplomacy : The Core Group worried about the consequences of 2 decrees
13/12/2020 08:46:39

Haiti - Diplomacy : The Core Group worried about the consequences of 2 decrees
On Saturday 12 December, the Core Group (made up of Ambassadors from Germany, Brazil, Canada, Spain, the United States of America, France, the European Union, the Special Representative of the Organization of American States and the Special Representative of the Secretary General of the United Nations) expressed in a statement its concern following the publication on November 26, 2020 of the Decree establishing, organizing and functioning of the National Intelligence Agency (ANI) and the Decree for the strengthening of public security.

The Decree on the strengthening of public security extends the qualification of "terrorist act" to certain facts that do not fall under it and provides for particularly heavy penalties (from 30 to 50 years in prison) https://www.haitilibre.com/en/news-32449-haiti-flash-shock-decree-defining-terrorist-acts-and-sanctions-in-haiti.html

The Decree creating the ANI gives the agents of this institution quasi-legal immunity, thus opening up the possibility of abuse https://www.haitilibre.com/en/news-32455-haiti-politic-decree-on-the-creation-of-the-haitian-intelligence-agency.html

These two presidential decrees, taken in areas that fall within the competence of a parliament, do not appear to conform to certain fundamental principles of democracy, the rule of law, and the civil and political rights of citizens. The Core Group also stresses the importance of re-establishing an elected parliament by organizing parliamentary elections as soon as possible, as soon as the conditions for a democratic election are met.

Reacting to the Diplomatic Corps, Rénald Lubérice Secretary General of the Council of Ministers and Advisor to the Head of State wrote on his Twitter account "We have seen enough, lived enough. From our friends we can receive advice. But no lesson to be learned. All the lessons of the past have been bad. If you still doubt it, admire the current results."

For his part, the more diplomatic Prime Minister Joseph Jouthe declared "I have read the Core Group communiqué of December 12th. I remain convinced that the Core Group will continue to help us reflect on how to put an end to the abuses by armed groups which sow insecurity, terror and mourning in families. These actions and behaviors prevent the Haitian authorities from working for a better performance in terms of human rights, and allow Haiti to fully play its role in the concert of nations."

It is true just like the Core Group, that any Haitian citizen can be worried and wonder about the relevance of certain acts qualified as terrorism by the Government such as among others : thefts, scams, pollution, jumble on the public highway to name but a few and to read associated sanctions such (among others) "Natural persons guilty of acts of terrorism are liable to 30 to 50 years of criminal imprisonment and a fine of 2 million to 200 million gourdes, without prejudice to damages and other penalties provided for by the penal code [...] In the event of a repeat offense, the penalty is that of life imprisonment..."

Download the decrees relating to the Creation, Organization and Operation of the National Intelligence Agency (ANI) and the Decree for the strengthening of public security : https://www.haitilibre.com/docs/ decret-ani.pdf

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