HSG calls for an end to inhumane camp evictions

HSG calls for an end to inhumane camp evictions
September 11, 2011 Christian Wisskirchen
trapped-Haiti

STOP INHUMANE EVICTION OF HAITI EARTHQUAKE VICTIMS. One the greatest scandals currently going on in Haiti is the increasing number of illegal and often brutal evictions that camp residents have to suffer. Following many evictions from private land, now more outrageously, public authorities are following suit.

Therefore everybody is called upon to appeal to Haitian and international authorities for this practice to be ended and for them to focus instead on organising the reconstruction process appropriately so that camp dwellers can move on into adequate housing in dignity.

To this end the HSG issued the following Press Release:

PRESS RELEASE | 15 July 2011 |For immediate release

STOP INHUMANE EVICTION OF HAITI EARTHQUAKE VICTIMS

The Haiti Support Group expresses its strong condemnation of the planned evictions of earthquake victims from their camp around Sylvio Cator stadium by the Mayor of Port au Prince, due to take place today and highlighted by Amnesty International.

This will be those particular victims’ third displacement following the devastating earthquake of January 12th 2010.

It follows a number of other recent evictions by municipal authorities in the Delmas area of the city.

We believe this reflects a worrying trend in which, having signally failed to provide those made homeless by the earthquake with any meaningful help, the authorities are now determined to treat the victims as the problem and force them ‘out of sight’ and into ever more marginalised conditions.

Given the current cholera epidemic raging in the country, this would equate to a death sentence for many.

We call upon the Haitian government to abide by the international legal standards for the treatment of IDP’s and work towards relieving, rather than adding to the misery of its people.

We call on the UK, Scotland, Wales and N Ireland Parliaments requesting MPs in London, members of the Welsh Assembly AMs, NI Legislative assembly MLAs, and Scottish Parliament MSPs to also act and pass resolutions or early day motions of condemnation of the evictions. We ask that our elected representatives request the UK FCO, DFID, Foreign Secretary William Hague and International Development Secretary Andrew Mitchell to take action, up to and including sanctions if necessary, against the GoH, if they do not back down on these evictions.

We further call on the UN, notably within the UN’s group of “friends of Haiti” in the UN (US, Canada, Spain, France), the UK government, and all international NGOs working in Haiti to condemn these actions and to exert the considerable leverage they have over the Government of Haiti to prevent further outrages taking place.

The unprecedented outpouring of solidarity towards the Haitian people after last year’s earthquake must not be allowed to go to waste.

Christian Wisskirchen

Chair, Haiti Support Group

Notes:

1.      The Haiti Support Group has been working since 1992 to amplify the voice of Haitian grassroots civil society groups, in favour of participatory democracy and equitable development www.haitisupportgroup.org.

2.      More information on the issue of evictions can be found in the HSG Briefing No.67 attached to this email

3.      For any interview requests, please contact the HSG Co-ordinator Anne McConnell at 0208 655 0839 
OR mobile 07791 513693

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