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30 prisoners escape in Haiti's largest jail break, Dec, 6, 2006

ACTION ALERT -
PLEASE SEND APPEALS IMMEDIATELY


Amnesty International Alert on Prison Killings
PUBLIC AI Index: AMR 36/063/2004
20 December 2004

UA 339/04 Fear for safety/unlawful killings
***

 

HLLN Note on the Amnesty International Alert on Prison Killings


A Toronto Star article by reporter Reed Lindsay reported perhaps as many as 110 Haitian prisoners have been executed by the guards at the National Penitentiary in Haiti.

Below, Amnesty International makes an appeal to write to Leon Charles, Haiti's National Police Director and Jean Pierre Daniel Audain, the Chief Public Prosecutor in Port-au-Prince, with copies of the letters to: the interim Gerard Latortue; Justice Minister Bernard Gousse; Police Commissioner David Beer, and, UN Special Representative Juan Gabriel Valdes to denounce the prison killings in Haiti, call for an investigation, demand that the authorities provide security to all the other detainees, particularly prison detainees who have been threatened with beatings and executions if they talk about having witnessed the massacre and allow detainees access to their families, lawyers and to medical assistance if needed.

Please, if you choose to answer the Amnesty International appeal below, do not forget to ALSO demand, especially to Chief prosecutor JEAN PIERRE DANIEL AUDAIN, to immediately release all prisoners who have been ORDERED RELEASED by a judge, such as 70-year old grandmother, Annette Auguste; Prime Minister Yvon Neptune; Senator Yvon Feuille and the other political prisoners who have been ordered released by judges, but REMAIN IN PRISON.

At least three different representatives of the Haitian Lawyers Leadership Network were told by a prisoner in this situation, that all the prisoners who have been ordered released who remain in prison, remain there illegally, virtually as hostages with no more court remedies, on the order of the CHIEF PROSECUTOR in Port-au-Prince, Mr. Jean Pierre Daniel Audain. The political prisoners who have been ordered released ask that the international community, the U.N. and U.S. Congress intervene on their behalf as they are the ones who support and keep the current Haitian government in power.

Mr. Jean Pierre Daniel Audain
and his superiors are arbitrarily holding detainees, who were arrested without a warrant, who have been vindicated before a judge and who have spent months unjustly imprisoned, despite being ordered released by Haitian judges, in violation of Haitian and international human rights laws. (See the Amnesty International Alert on Prison Killings below for the requisite contact information.)

Marguerite Laurent, Esq.
Founder and Chair, Haitian Lawyers Leadership Network
Dec. 21, 2004

********


Amnesty International Alert on Prison Killings

PUBLIC AI Index: AMR 36/063/2004
20 December 2004

UA 339/04 Fear for safety/unlawful killings

HAITI -Prisoners at National Penitentiary in Port-au-Prince

A prison riot on the night of 1 December left 10 prisoners dead and
around 40 injured, according to official figures, but inmates have
claimed that many more died, and that guards were "executing"
prisoners. Visits to the prison have been severely restricted, making
the true situation very difficult to assess. Prisoners who have
spoken to journalists are feared to be at risk of reprisals from
prison guards.

The riot took place at the National Penitentiary, which holds over
1,000 detainees, in the capital, Port-au-Prince. Officials claim that
prisoners who did not want to be transferred to other facilities
broke out of their cells, set fire to mattresses and used bricks,
kitchen utensils and water pipes as weapons against prison guards and
the police who were called to the scene. Some of the dead prisoners
had been shot, and others stabbed, according to Haitian National
Police officials, who gave no further information about the
circumstances in which the men had died.

Two prisoners and one hospital worker have contradicted the official
version of events, saying they saw many more than 10 corpses. One of
these witnesses, a prisoner released two days after the riot, told a
journalist he had seen the police open fire on the detainees, take
prisoners out of their cells and force them into a passageway to
execute them methodically. He said prison guards had beaten him and
warned him not to talk about what he had seen. He is now in hiding.
The director of the national police announced on 6 December that
there would be an investigation into the riot. However, he gave no
details, and three weeks after the riot no official information has
been made public, not even the list of casualties. This means that
prisoners' families still do not know whether their relatives are
alive or not.

RECOMMENDED ACTION:
Please send appeals to arrive as quickly as
possible, in French, English or your own language:

- urging the authorities to order an independent and thorough
judicial investigation into the killings at the National Penitentiary
on 1 December, and bring those responsible to justice;

- expressing concern at reports that prison guards have beaten and
threatened witnesses to the killings, and asking for all such
witnesses to be fully protected from any reprisals;

- calling for detainees to be given access to lawyers, their families
and any medical assistance they may require;

- reminding the authorities of their need to ensure that all military
police and prison guards are properly trained in accordance with
international standards on the use of force and treatment of
detainees, and are provided with the conditions and training to
perform their duties in such a way as to ensure the safety of both
detainees and themselves.

APPEALS TO: (please note that fax numbers can be extremely difficult
to get through to)

National Police Director

Monsieur Léon Charles
Directeur Général de la Police Nationale d'Haïti
Grand Quartier général de la Police
12 rue Oscar Pacot,
Port-au-Prince, Haïti

Fax: + 509 245 7374
Salutation: Monsieur le Directeur

*****************************************

Public prosecutor


Monsieur Jean Pierre Daniel Audain
Commissaire du Gouvernement près le Tribunal de première instance de
Port au Prince
Parquet de Port-au-Prince
Port au Prince, Haïti
Salutation: Monsieur le Commissaire du Gouvernement

 

***********************************************

COPIES TO:

Prime Minister

Monsieur Gérard Latortue
Premier Ministre
Ministre de l'Intérieure
Villa d'Accueil
Delmas 60
Musseau, Port-au-Prince, Haiti

Fax: + 509 249 5561
Salutation: Monsieur le Premier Ministre

*

Justice Minister

Monsieur Bernard Gousse
Ministre de la Justice et de la Sécurité Publique
Ministère de la Justice
19 Avenue Charles Summer
Port-au-Prince, Haïti

Fax: + 509 245 0474
Salutation: Monsieur le Ministre

 

*

UN Special Representative

Mr Juan Gabriel Valdés
Special Representative of the Secretary-General
United Nations Stabilization Mission in Haiti
387, avenue John Brown
Port-au-Prince, Haïti

Fax: + 509 244 3512
Salutation: Dear Mr Valdés

 

*

Police Commissioner

Mr David Beer
Police Commissioner
United Nations Stabilization Mission in Haiti
387, avenue John Brown
Port-au-Prince, Haiti

Fax: + 509 244 9366
Salutation: Dear Mr Beer

PLEASE SEND APPEALS IMMEDIATELY. Check with the International
Secretariat, or your section office, if sending appeals after 31
January 2005. Internet communications are not secure and therefore
Amnesty International Ltd does not accept legal responsibility for
the contents of this message. If you are not the intended recipient
you must not disclose or rely on the information in this e-mail. Any
views or opinions presented are solely those of the author and do not
necessarily represent those of Amnesty International Ltd unless
specifically stated. Electronic communications including email might
be monitored by Amnesty International Ltd. for operational or
business reasons.
****************************


Wed Dec 6, 2006
30 prisoners escape in Haiti’s largest jail break

http://www.radiojamaica.com/news/story.php?category=6&story=30723


Haitian authorities are searching for as many as 30 prisoners who escaped from the country's largest jail earlier this week.

Police confirmed that the prisoners fled the over crowded National Penitentiary on Monday.

Police Inspector General Fritz Jean said the matter was being investigated and one radio station said at least four guards had been arrested in connection with the prisoners escape.

The National Penitentiary has become notorious for jail breaks in recent months.
Earlier this year 26 Haitians deported from the United States escaped from a holding cell, while in February last year, 500 prisoners escaped after being aided by corrupt security guards.

In 2004, hundreds of prisoners escaped from the century old prison amid the chaos that led to the removal of then President Jean Bertrand Aristide from office.

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Urge the Caribbean Community to stand firm in not recognizing the illegal Latortue regime:

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zilibutton Slide Show at the July 27, 2004 Haiti Forum Press Conference during the DNC in Boston honoring those who stand firm for Haiti and democracy; those who tell the truth about Haiti; Presenting the Haiti Resolution, and; remembering Haiti's revolutionary legacy in 2004 and all those who have lost life or liberty fighting against the Feb. 29, 2004 Coup d'etat and its consequences
     
 
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