Haiti - Justice : Statements of Mirlande Manigat on the Duvalier case - HaitiLibre.com : Haiti news 7/7

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Haiti - Justice : Statements of Mirlande Manigat on the Duvalier case
04/03/2013 12:12:56

Haiti - Justice : Statements of Mirlande Manigat on the Duvalier case
Following the hearing on 28 February, of former President Jean Claude Duvalier before the Court of Appeal, Mirande Manigat has shared some reflections on the judicial, political and moral of this case.

"[...] For me, there are 3 aspects in this case, there is the strictly legal aspect : the question that there is no crime against humanity in our jurisdiction, in our texts, or that after 10 years some crimes can not be discussed, or even the aspects on the the technical plan... that is the legal aspect.

You have the political aspect, it is not anyone that we judge is a person who has a balance. Duvalierists can tell you that there were good things you hear people say that in Jean-Claude Duvalier there was security, there was this, there was that... we can not say that the balance is totally negative. But beware, as regards the respect of Right, the respect for human rights, the balance is negative. So it is not normal to continue to speak of impunity. Me, it is under Jean Claude Duvalier that I was in exile, I learned that they had arrested my father, my mother and two uncles. My mother made 15 months in prison, my father 3 years, without being judged.

However, I am back in Haiti, and I have not filed a complaint against Jean Claude Duvalier, but I can not forget that. People who have been victims can not forget, there are people who died, there are families who have been dislocated, many people were forced to go into exile, we can not forget that.

The third aspect is the moral dimension. I've never heard Jean-Claude Duvalier say I'm sorry. There are things that happened, I regret, at least that. It is true that we are not in the field of religion - a fault confessed is half redressed - but at least there would be an awareness, that there is a part of the history of Haiti, which is dark.

Now how that will continue on the legal proceedings ? That is something else.

They did not torture [members of her family], I am an honest, truthful, we children, who were in exile, we were afraid of the situation in which they were... But when they are released from prison, they said they had never been tortured [...] that is understood, but why they arrested them ? They arrested them ike that, and they have released like that ? [...]

That is not the rule of law. It is very easy to say that they have not tortured them, they have not done this, but however, there were arbitrary arrests, arbitrary release also. I give the example of my father, my mother and my two uncles, arrested in 1972, I have not forgotten, simply I think that among all the people who have suffered, well to a certain extent, they were less victim, because there has been no loss of life or torture, but for others, there have been deaths, there was torture. So, if the procedure is activated [against Jean Claude Duvalier], it must follow, that's for sure ! [...]"

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