March 20, 2001
OAS Secretary General Condemns Violence in Haiti
The Secretary General of the Organization of American
States, Cesar Gaviria, condemns the current wave of violence
and the climate of insecurity in Haiti, which do not contribute
to a solution of the country's problems but would only
serve to further polarize the society.
In reiterating his conviction that the resolution of
the crisis arising from the irregularities in the May
21, 2000 elections is essential to the strengthening
of democracy and respect for human rights in Haiti,
the Secretary General believes that the disturbances
over the past few days demonstrate clearly the need
for the creation of conditions to facilitate dialogue
among all parties involved.
Following Foreign Minister Joseph Philippe Antonio's
presentation on March 14, 2001, the Permanent Council
mandated the Secretary General to consult with the Government
of Haiti, representatives of other political sectors
and civil society, and, "as appropriate, to propose
other measures that could contribute to the strengthening
of the democratic process in Haiti."
The Secretary General therefore appeals for calm and
for the cooperation of the political community and civil
society in the country to create the necessary conditions
for dialogue. The Secretary General further calls on
all Haitians, and in particular political party leaders
and their supporters, to refrain from actions or statements
that could exacerbate tensions and jeopardize the search
for a peaceful solution to the crisis.
As indicated previously, and in keeping with its Charter
obligations, the OAS stands ready to collaborate in
finding a solution to the difficulties being faced by