The Haiti Briefing Archive

Celebrating 25 years of groundbreaking reporting

THE HAITI BRIEFING ARCHIVE – 25 YEARS OF GROUNDBREAKING REPORTING

Unwanted Gifts: A Concise History of Harming Haiti (HB81)
Unwanted Gifts: A Concise History of Harming Haiti (HB81)
Download PDF A historical insight into centuries of international meddling and mishaps in Haiti. Will they ever learn? In October 2010, a United Nations Stabilisation Mission (MINUSTAH) base near Mirebalais polluted the Meille River with faecal matter....

Nou Bouke Viv Anba Tant (HB68)
Nou Bouke Viv Anba Tant (HB68)
Download PDF We're fed up of living in tents! Nou Bouke Viv Anba Tant The sit-in that blocked the road in front of the Ministry of Social Affairs on World Habitat Day was peaceful but noisy. “We are people not animals!” “Get us out of these pigeon...

Petrol Price Rise Fuels Discontent (HB48)
Petrol Price Rise Fuels Discontent (HB48)
Download PDF In January, the cash-strapped Haitian government bowed to pressure from the International Monetary Fund and withdrew the state subsidy pegging petrol, diesel and kerosene prices at well below the world market rate. The price of vehicle fuel...

Long Hot Summer for Aristide (HB47)
Long Hot Summer for Aristide (HB47)
Download PDF The government of Jean-Bertrand Aristide, which came to power with a landslide electoral victory only two years ago, is facing sliding popularity and mounting protest on all fronts. At root of the deepening disillusionment is the continued...

Suffering from Sanctions, Again (HB46)
Suffering from Sanctions, Again (HB46)
Download PDF The Haitian economy is more than just on its knees - it's now a matter of skin and bones. Sanctions against the military regime in the early 1990s failed to shift the generals but did succeed in reducing economic capacity by a quarter. Since...

Danger Signs After Coup Bid (HB45)
Danger Signs After Coup Bid (HB45)
Download PDF Political tensions deepened and violence flared following an apparent coup attempt against the government on the night of the 16th December. Around 30 armed men took over the Presidential Palace, but after exchanges of gunfire with police...

Feeling the Fallout from the attacks on the US (HB44)
Feeling the Fallout from the attacks on the US (HB44)
Download PDF The United States' declaration of a "war on terrorism" following the 11 September attacks was met with some scepticism, if not cynicism, by those familiar with the case of Emmanuel 'Toto' Constant. Haiti's number one terrorist fled to the...

Time for the
Time for the 'Politicians' to Step Aside (HB43)
Download PDF Diplomatic missions have come and gone. Eleventh hour meetings have been boycotted; others have been postponed. Shots have been fired, and stones have been thrown. Foreign development aid has been suspended, and dire warnings have been issued....

A Full House but Nobody Home (HB42)
A Full House but Nobody Home (HB42)
Download PDF Almost one year since elections that returned a Parliament completely dominated by President Aristide's Lavalas Family Party, the political scene in Haiti continues to waiver between farce and tragedy. ...

Aristide is Back (HB41)
Aristide is Back (HB41)
Download PDF Ten yearssince he was first elected President, Jean-Bertrand Aristide has returned to power following an election in November that was boycotted by all the main opposition parties. They refused to take part, claiming that, far from being...

Solidarity Boosts Union Action (HB40)
Solidarity Boosts Union Action (HB40)
Download PDF After a year-long campaign, the labour union representing some 300 workers at the Marnier-Lapostelle orange plantation in northern Haiti has won wage increases and some improvements in conditions. In late July, the French company that imports...

Scale of Lavalas Victory Questioned (HB39)
Scale of Lavalas Victory Questioned (HB39)
Download PDF The May 21st elections returned a huge victory for Jean-Betrand Aristide's new, populist Lavalas Family party. According to the official results, the Lavalas Family won 18 out of 19 Senate seats (the other went to an independent), 26 out...

Chronicle of an Election Postponed (HB38)
Chronicle of an Election Postponed (HB38)
Download PDF Elections for every single elected office in Haiti, save the Presidency and a third of the Senate, have been due since the end of 1998. Members of Parliament had blocked new elections by vetoing the President's nominees for a Prime Minister,...

Unwelcome, Unwanted: Haitian Migrant Workers (HB37)
Unwelcome, Unwanted: Haitian Migrant Workers (HB37)
Download PDF When a boat carrying some 400 Haitians ran aground just two miles off the Florida coast on New Year's Day, the British media had its first Haiti headline story for several years. Haiti 'boat-people' is an old chestnut that is easy to roast...

Death and Confusion - who Controls the Police? (HB36)
Death and Confusion - who Controls the Police? (HB36)
Download PDF The question of criminal and political violence in Haiti has raised a great deal of controversy since the resignation on 7 October of the Secretary of State for Public Security, Robert Manuel, and the assassination, two days later, of former...

Doing the Election Dance (HB35)
Doing the Election Dance (HB35)
Download PDF In 1990, the majority of Haitians were enthusiastic voters, but then saw their elected candidate overthrown by a military coup. When, three years later, President Aristide was returned to power by the United Nations, part of the deal was...

Sowing the Seeds for a Grassroots Revival (HB34)
Sowing the Seeds for a Grassroots Revival (HB34)
Download PDF These are dark days in Haiti. The promise of economic renewal funded by international development aid has come to nothing. Impunity for human rights violators has given birth to a pervasive sense of insecurity. Common crime is on the increase,...

Fed Up with Violence (HB33)
Fed Up with Violence (HB33)
Download PDF In Creole, there are many ways to express a dilemma. But these days, most Haitians would probably tell you that they are "caught between two fires". One fire is the 'forces of darkness', the legions of former Tonton Macoutes, soldiers, paramilitary...

Collapse of Parliament Heralds Aristide Comeback (HB32)
Collapse of Parliament Heralds Aristide Comeback (HB32)
Download PDF The political crisis, simmering for the best part of two years, finally came to the boil in January. Parliamentary elections due in 1997 and 1998 had been cancelled, and the existing Parliament had rejected several attempts by the President...

Old Tricks, New Dog: US
Old Tricks, New Dog: US 'Democracy Enhancement' (HB31)
Download PDF It is common knowledge that the United States uses covert operations and the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) to destabilize and even overthrow progressive governments, and to subvert democratic political movements throughout the Americas...

Hurricane George - Coup de Grace (HB30)
Hurricane George - Coup de Grace (HB30)
Download PDF Rain brought by Hurricane George began to fall on the treeless mountainsides of Haiti on September 22. That night, the small town of Fonds Verrettes in the south-east was wiped off the face of the earth by a seven-foot wave of flood water,...

US Makes a Mockery of Justice (HB29)
US Makes a Mockery of Justice (HB29)
Download PDF In a July interview with the US magazine, Emerge, Emmanuel Constant, the leader of the FRAPH death squad that murdered hundreds of Haitians in 1993-1994, claims that his organisation is still operating in Haiti and that   ...

Reappraising Vodou (HB28)
Reappraising Vodou (HB28)
Download PDF Vodou, the religion of Haiti, is a major feature of Haitian history, society, culture and identity. ...
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Crack Appears in New Police Force (HB27)
Crack Appears in New Police Force (HB27)
Download PDF Drug alert deepens as rocks of crack cocaine are found on sale in Cité Soleil. ...

Morale-Boosting Soccer Triumph (HB26)
Morale-Boosting Soccer Triumph (HB26)
Download PDF While the political crisis deepened, with still no Prime Minister and half of the ministers of state also resigning, Haitians were thrilled by another sort of game. ...
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What a Foul-Up (HB25)
What a Foul-Up (HB25)
Download PDF In the April elections for nine Senators and 700 seats on new local assemblies only 5% of the registered electorate cast their votes. Commentators proffered various explanations for the pathetic turnout, ranging from the absence of a tradition...

Teachers and Pupils Strike (HB 24)
Teachers and Pupils Strike (HB 24)
Download PDF School students and teachers from the state education sector took their protests to the street in May. Almost everywhere throughout the country state schools were closed because of an unlimited strike called by teachers' unions. ...

Lavalas Splits, Violence Increases (HB23)
Lavalas Splits, Violence Increases (HB23)
Download PDF The 'gran manjè' - literally the big eaters - are the 'fat cats', the corrupt politicians, the government bureaucrats and other Haitians officials who are getting rich off the backs of the poor. The anti-gran manjè theme sponteneously...

Protests Leave Lavalas Shaking (HB22)
Protests Leave Lavalas Shaking (HB22)
Download PDF Roadblocks, demonstrations and strikes - during the month of January generalised discontent was channelled into action in a wave of protests against the government's economic policy. Towards the end of last year there were strikes by shopkeepers,...

Wage Slavery (HB21)
Wage Slavery (HB21)
Download PDF Haitian workers in the capital’s assembly plants work in hot, airless, and dimly lit factories sewing gloves, underwear, sports clothes and other garments for the North American market. ...

Chickens Come Home to Roost (HB20)
Chickens Come Home to Roost (HB20)
Download PDF Following several weeks of shootings and bomb threats, former soldiers from the disbanded Haitian army are threatening more violence if their demands for back pay and release of imprisoned colleagues are not met. Under pressure from so-called...

Land Reform – the Number One Demand (HB19)
Land Reform – the Number One Demand (HB19)
Download PDF “Land is truly the Number One biggest demand of Haitian peasants who have fought and died for it, because only having land can assure a peasant’s survival.” ...

Piggy in the Middle (HB18)
Piggy in the Middle (HB18)
Download PDF “The first stage was when the police feared the people. The second stage that we are in now is the police starting to use repression against the people.” ...

Between the Peasants and the Donors (HB17)
Between the Peasants and the Donors (HB17)
Download PDF New President of Haiti, Rene Préval, unveils his strategy to try to repair Haiti’s shattered economy. ...

Farewell Aristide (HB16)
Farewell Aristide (HB16)
Download PDF So it's farewell to President Aristide who hands over to his successor, René Préval, on February 7th. As the living embodiment of the Haitian people's aspiration for the creation of a new society, Aristide has been a quite incredible phenomenon....

Pot Threatens to Boil Over (HB15)
Pot Threatens to Boil Over (HB15)
Download PDF The patience of many thousands of Haitians finally snapped following the November 7th assassination of the Lavalas MP, Jean Hubert Feuille. In Port-au-Prince and many other cities crowds took to the streets, building roadblocks, searching...

One Step Forward, Two Steps Back (HB14)
One Step Forward, Two Steps Back (HB14)
Download PDF Haiti's parliamentary and local elections on June 25 resulted in a commanding victory for the Lavalas platform (PPL) supported by President Aristide. Lavalas candidates were outright winners of 5 out of 18 seats in the Senate, and 16 out...

In the Shadow of the Sweatshop (HB13)
In the Shadow of the Sweatshop (HB13)
Download PDF In the Shadow of the Sweatshop . Also featuring information on Harold Pinter Haiti Exhibition. Haiti is a country laid waste by decades of dictatorship, and years of economic sanctions. There is a desperate need for reconstruction and development,...

Haiti Photos & Art (HB12 Sup)
Haiti Photos & Art (HB12 Sup)
Download PDF As well as paintings and ironworks by Haitian artists the exhibition features photos of Haiti by twenty international photojournalists here previewed by the Guardian's Maggie O'Kane. ...
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A Democracy Made of Cardboard (HB12)
A Democracy Made of Cardboard (HB12)
Download PDF Nobody with an understanding of the Haitian political scene believed that the return of Aristide last October would mean that the struggle for democracy was over. The restoration of the legitimate president was a step forward but just a...

Problems Not Solved by US Presence (HB 11)
Problems Not Solved by US Presence (HB 11)
Download PDF There has been so little news in the mainstream media you could be forgiven for thinking that, with the return of Aristide, all Haiti's problems are over. Unfortunately, this is not so. The US-dominated multinational force is failing to...

Aristide Returns — Mission Accomplished? (HB10)
Aristide Returns — Mission Accomplished? (HB10)
Download PDF Three years ago, who would have betted on President Aristide returning to Haiti? Let alone with the support of the United States which for decades has helped to keep Duvalierism alive and kicking. But credit for the return of Aristide...

Military Calls Clinton
Military Calls Clinton's Bluff (HB9)
Download PDF Will the invasion of Haiti happen? Does anyone know? Does Clinton know? As we go to press, sources in Washington say it will be mid-September at the earliest. The passing of the United Nations resolution authorising an invasion certainly...

Is the US Serious? Shutting Down the Dominican-Haiti Border (HB8)
Is the US Serious? Shutting Down the Dominican-Haiti Border (HB8)
Download PDF The United States has added teeth to the new United Nations sanctions imposed in May by announcing it will assist the Dominican Republic to seal the border it shares with Haiti, and by suspending commercial flights and banning money transfers....

Hundreds Slain in New Wave of Terror (HB7)
Hundreds Slain in New Wave of Terror (HB7)
Download PDF The body of a well-known Aristide supporter, Dady Pierre, murdered on 10 March in Cité Soleil was found with his skull sliced open by machete and his face cut off. Witnesses identified the attackers as a soldier, two atttachés who work...

Clampdown in Jérémie (HB6)
Clampdown in Jérémie (HB6)
Download PDF Last October, when the Haitian army refused to comply with the UN-brokered accord to restore democracy, the international community needed to act decisively. It has failed to do so and as a result the Haitian crisis has gone from bad to...

Mourning Democracy in Haiti (HB5)
Mourning Democracy in Haiti (HB5)
Download PDF Before the September 1991 coup d'état, 1,500 sacks of charcoal per month were shipped from Jérémie on the western tip of Haiti's southern peninsular. Now, over two years later, that figure has risen to over 4,500. This simple statistic...

UN
UN's Plan for Haiti is On Again (HB4)
Download PDF Coup leaders say yes - or is it maybe? The United Nations plan to end the political deadlock in Haiti appeared to be back on course again after an eleventh hour volte-face by the coup leaders. The proposed plan, engineered over the preceding...

Mayor of Port-au-Prince to Address London Haiti Conference (HB3)
Mayor of Port-au-Prince to Address London Haiti Conference (HB3)
Download PDF Mayor Evans Paul is a founder and leading spokesman for the Front for National Change and Democracy, Haiti's most popular political party. The FNCD's candidate in the 1990 presidential election was Jean-Bertrand Aristide. Mr Paul was elected...

Haiti: National Tragedy, International Scandal (HB2)
Haiti: National Tragedy, International Scandal (HB2)
Download PDF "The dogs eat the bodies very quickly" - Haitian peasant at Titanyen body dump "This is unique, horrifyingly unique. It's the only case where we are forcibly turning people back to the custody of a regime which we have branded a gross violator...

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