World Video | Defence | Foreign Affairs | Natural Events | Trade | NZ in World News | NZ National News Video | NZ Regional News | Search


Haiti: Rebels and forces must respect human rights

Haiti: Rebels, like government forces, must respect human rights

Rebel leaders have the responsibility to respect human rights and ensure that humanitarian assistance has access, said Amnesty International as rebel forces took control of Haiti's second largest city Cap Haïtien, setting the northern half of the country outside the sphere of state control.

"A number of rebel leaders have abysmal human rights records, raising serious concern about levels of violence, as well as the humanitarian situation, in the areas under their control," Amnesty International said today. "As a matter of urgency, rebel forces must respect the rights of all Haitians as they expand their region of influence."

Rebel leader Guy Philippe is reported as saying that up to eleven people were killed in the taking of Cap Haïtien on Sunday; it was not possible to confirm those figures.

Amnesty International also repeated its calls for police and armed government supporters to respect human rights. In one worrying incident in Port-au-Prince on Friday 20 February, a Haitian correspondent and a foreign cameraman were reportedly among nearly a dozen people injured when pro-government gang members attacked an opposition demonstration.

On the political front, international bodies have joined forces to propose a settlement of Haiti's political crisis.

Representatives of CARICOM, the Organisation of American States, the European Union, the United States, Canada and France proposed a settlement, agreed to by Haiti's president Jean Bertrand Aristide, whereby a multisectoral 'council of wise men' would name a new Prime Minister and a new Cabinet to help him govern.

The political opposition initially rejected the plan, but has reportedly been given until 22:00 GMT today to give a formal response.

The rebel forces are not included in the plan.

"Any political settlement must be grounded in the rule of law, and ultimately in the Haitian Constitution, if all parties involved in the conflict are truly committed to finding a peaceful and lasting solution," Amnesty International concluded.

Background Information Rebel leaders include notorious figures such as Louis Jodel Chamblain and Jean Tatoune, convicted of gross human rights violations committed a decade ago. Their forces are reported to include a number of former soldiers implicated in human rights abuses in the Central Plateau region of Haiti over the last year.

View all AI documents on Haiti:

© Scoop Media

World Headlines


At The UN: Paris Climate Agreement Moves Closer To Entry Into Force

The Paris Agreement on climate change moved closer toward entering into force in 2016 as 31 more countries joined the agreement today at a special event hosted by United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon. More>>



Gordon Campbell: On The End Game In Spain (And Other World News)

The coverage of international news seems almost entirely dependent on a random selection of whatever some overseas news agency happens to be carrying overnight... Here are a few interesting international stories that have largely flown beneath the radar this past week. More>>

Amnesty/Human Rights Watch: Appalling Abuse, Neglect Of Refugees On Nauru

Refugees and asylum seekers on Nauru, most of whom have been held there for three years, routinely face neglect by health workers and other service providers who have been hired by the Australian government, as well as frequent unpunished assaults by local Nauruans. More>>


Other Australian Detention

Gordon Campbell: On The Censorship Havoc In South Africa’s State Broadcaster

Demands have included an order to staff that there should be no further negative news about the country’s President Jacob Zuma, and SABC camera operators responsible for choosing camera angles that have allegedly made the President ‘look shorter’ were to be retrained... More>>


Gordon Campbell: On A Bad Week For Malcolm Turnbull, And The Queen

Malcolm Turnbull’s immediate goal – mere survival – is still within his grasp... In every other respect though, this election has been a total disaster for the Liberals. More>>


Gordon Campbell: On Bidding Bye Bye To Boris

Boris Johnson’s exit from the contest for Conservative Party leadership supports the conspiracy theory that he never really expected the “Leave” option to win the referendum – and he has no intention now of picking up the poisoned chalice that managing the outcome will entail... More>>


Get More From Scoop

Search Scoop  
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news