Fanmi Lavalas: Cruising into History  Aug 13 2004


Yon sèl randevou: randevou bò tab la
Bwat postal 2472, Potoprens, Ayiti

The following Fanmi Lavalas statement is the result of an extensive dialogue with the organizers of "Cruising into History" and pro-democracy activists. Fanmi Lavalas submitted a proposal where it has expressed its deep concerns in regards to "Cruising into History". Fanmi Lavalas held and participated in meetings with Congressman John Conyers, pro democracy activists and organizations, actor and activist Danny Glover, and organizers of the cruise.


In 1804, the success of the Haitian Slave Revolution has made Haiti the first black independent country in the world. This Haitian great victory symbolized not only a victory against colonialism and slavery but also against racism, injustice and tyranny.

Two hundred years later, while Haiti is celebrating the bicentennial anniversary of its independence, a small minority helped by the same colonialist countries that have supported slavery for many years organized a "coup d'état" against the democratically elected President Jean-Bertrand Aristide and stopped the Haiti ongoing democratic process. This recent coup is the 34th bloody coup d'état that happened during these 200 years following 1804.

Human rights organizations reports and direct talks with Fanmi Lavalas grassroots have shown that the situation in Haiti is one of insecurity and generalized violence. Rights of citizen are not protected; Haitian people can no more speak freely or demonstrate. Since President Aristide forced departure, Fanmi Lavalas members and supporters across the country have been killed, illegally arrested, and many more are in hiding or in exile, properties have been ransacked or confiscated. The country is being governed without any constitutional rule. All democratic principles are being violated.

It's clear that since February 29th, 2004, Haiti is under occupation. Instead of celebrating their independence, Haitian people are brought back to the period prior to 1804 where they had to fight for freedom, justice, respect of people vote and basic human rights. It is ashamed that in the 21st century, power can be used to overthrow a democratically elected president.

Fanmi Lavalas welcomes the efforts made by the organizers of Cruising into History to ensure that the cruise is not used to endorse and legitimate the actual de facto government and to undermine the efforts made by the Haitian people in Haiti and abroad, the international community (the Black Caucus, CARICOM, the African Union, and generally all freedom loving people) to restore constitutional rule and democracy in Haiti.

The people of Haiti are not insensitive to this transnational message of solidarity. It does mean that the organizers of "Cruising Into History" understand the deep and profound meaning of what happened on February 29th 2004: It was a "coup d'etat" not only against Haitian people but against all people and specially black people throughout the world that are still fighting for justice, freedom and democracy. It does also mean that they understand the urgent need to restore democracy in Haiti.

Fanmi Lavalas believes that democracy can not be constructed on human rights abuses.

Therefore Fanmi Lavalas, standing in solidarity with its members and supporters and all Haitian people who believe in the principles of democracy, has decided not to be on the boat in protest against all human rights violations in Haiti perpetrated by the de facto government. Accordingly no member of Fanmi Lavalas is authorized to speak on behalf of Fanmi Lavalas on the cruise.

Fanmi Lavalas takes this opportunity to raise, once again, its voice to demand:

  • The liberation of all members and supporters of Fanmi Lavalas that are illegally detained;
  • The unconditional return in Haiti of all Fanmi Lavalas members and supporters in exile;
  • The protection of every citizen in the exercise of their political rights;
  • The stopping of all killings, intimidations and unlawful arrests in the country.

Fanmi Lavalas states once again that, the Organization will not send representatives in any Provisory Electoral Council (CEP) or participate in any de facto government until the return of the rule of law and the constitutional order. Fanmi Lavalas encourages all Haitian people to keep up the peaceful mobilization.

With the people of Haiti, let fill the empty word of democracy used by colonialist powers with freedom, justice, respect of basic human rights and give to democracy its deep and real sense. Let turn into reality the Haitian dream for democracy.

Yon sèl nou fèb, ansanm nou fò, ansanm ansanm nou se LAVALAS

Fanmi Lavalas Commission of Communication

  • Mr Mario Dupuy
  • Dr Maryse Narcisse
  • Maître Angelot Bell Esq
  • Mr Jonas Petit

Yon sèl nou fèb, ansanm nou fò, ansanm ansanm nou se LAVALAS

.oOo. end of official Fanmi Lavalas statement .oOo.

see also Haïti Progres Aug 4 2004

"History Excursion Appears to be Cruising for a Bruising"