February 5-7, 2005
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February 5-7 - Washington DC

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  • 1. Summary of Haiti's current socio-political situation
  • 2. "Kongrè Bwa Kayiman (Crocodile Woods) 2005"
  • 3. The objectives of "Kongrè Bwa Kayiman 2005"
  • 4. Where "Kongrè Bwa Kayiman 2005" will take place?
  • 5. Date and Duration of "Kongrè Bwa Kayiman 2005"
  • 6. Themes of "Kongrè Bwa Kayiman 2005"
  • 7. The Acts of "Kongrè Bwa Kayiman 2005"
  • 8. Registration Information and Fee
  • 9. Organizing Committee
  • 10. Sponsors
  • Lodging Information
  • Tentative Program
  • Historical Overview of Kongrè Bwa Kayiman
  • 5. Solidarity for Haiti 2004 Conference

Click this link to get Conference PDF and Registration form


1. Summary of Haiti's Current Sociopolitical Situation

Drastic economic sanctions, an embargo on the purchase of arms, a massive campaign of vilification and disinformation against the Haitian people and their elected representatives led by:

  • The conservative international sector and passed on by their local acolytes;
  • Media campaigns by human rights organizations as well as development agencies with anti-democratic goals;
  • Verbal attacks launched, on the diplomatic level against Haiti's national sovereignty on the part of countries, which claim to be champions of democracy like the United States;
  • Frequent murderous incursions into the national territory beginning with the Haiti-Dominican Republic border by mercenaries recruited from among the former members of the defunct Haitian Army and from groups of ex-paramilitaries
  • These are some examples of the facts having characterized the political situation which prevailed in Haiti on the eve of the coup d'état of February 29, 2004, and of the kidnapping of the President democratically elected by the people.
  • This sequence of events was followed by the hastily arranged vote in the middle of the night of a resolution by the UN Security Council giving "authority to the governments of the United States, France, and Canada to invade the country to supposedly reestablish the peace."

Since then, the country has been victim of total political confusion. Outside of constitutional norms:

  • A puppet government was installed there
  • MINUSTAH, UN Mission for the Stabilization of Haiti, shares a small part of the territory with the ex-militaries and para-militaries while these groups control the largest part of the country.
  • The resumption of the aid promised is still pending.
  • The condition of life of the people continues to deteriorate.
  • Inside a popular mobilization is paralyzing the normal functioning of the country demanding the return of democracy and the return of the President elected by the people.

The 53 countries belonging to the African Union, the 13 countries of CARICOM (Community of Countries of the Caribbean), Cuba and Venezuela, in other words, the majority of the countries in the UN General Assembly do not recognize the government resulting from the coup d'état of February 29, 2004. The Haitian political class regrouped within the former opposition, which earlier took part in the coup d'état, now are denouncing the failure of the current government and are demanding its departure. 2. THE CONGRESS "BWA KAYIMAN" (Crocodile Woods) 2005

Right during the Bicentennial Celebration of National Independence the neo-colonialists in collaboration with the local separatists organized a coup d'état, chased the legitimate, democratic, and constitutional government from power. In the same blow, they brought on the occupation of the national territory by foreign forces.

Faced with this plot against the Haitian people,

Faced with this dictatorship of the "International Community", which treads on democratic principles as well as the dignity of the Haitian people,

Faced with the confusion born out of the campaign of disinformation and denigration orchestrated by the conservative sectors against the people and their elected representatives,

Declaring that the Haitian people have never ceased fighting to save their dignity, to recover their independence, to bring back democracy,

It is necessary to revive August 14, 1791 by organizing the Congress Bwa Kayiman 2005.

Across Europe, North America and elsewhere many Haitian compatriots and many organizations are working with a view to bring their contribution to the struggle of the Haitian people for the recovery of their dignity. There exist also numerous friends, personalities from the political world, celebrities from the world of the arts, rights and freedom activists, men and women of the church...etc. who bear witness in a thousand and one ways standing in solidarity with the Haitian people. What is the real impact of all these actions on the decision-makers, of the political situation in Haiti?

It is imperative and necessary to bring together all these forces, all these important resources to look together at what has been done, what remains to be done, and how it has to be done so that there will be more productive results.

Since 2001, The September 30th Foundation, the largest movement of human rights in Haiti, at the head of the struggle for the respect of the principle of law and self-determination of the Haitian people, faced with the imminent danger to Haiti's young democracy to the plot that was hatched by the retrograde sector of the international community, already had begun to reflect on the necessity of organizing a worldwide conference of solidarity with the Haitian people. The coordinator of the Foundation made the public aware in many interviews given to the press. The steps taken, the work accomplished in the same direction by other comrades in Haiti and abroad made it possible under the auspices of the September 30th Foundation to succeed with a first international meeting of solidarity on January 3, 2004 in Port-Au-Prince.

This was the occasion for friends of the Haitian people, for Haitian compatriots living abroad and having returned to the country for the Bicentennial Celebration of Independence to meet militants and heads of organizations based in Haiti, and to hold discussions among themselves. The resolution issued from this meeting is in the appendix of this current document.


The Objectives

The Congress Bwa Kayiman 2005 aims fundamentally to:

* Gather the different parts of the fighting force fighting here and elsewhere for Haiti to win back its national dignity and the return of democracy in Haiti.

*Gather the true friends of the Haitian people. Reconstruct the vast movement of solidarity with the struggle of the Haitian people.

*Define strategies of resistance, which can allow us to reinforce in Haiti and in the Diaspora the mobilization for the return of Democracy in Haiti and the recovery of national sovereignty


Due to the fact that the particular political situation of the country where foreign military troops occupy the national territory, due to the fact of the systematic repression against Haitian people and particularly against those who are fighting for the return of democracy, the Congress BWA KAYIMAN 2005 will take place in Washington, D.C. Trinity University Haiti Program has agreed to host this Congress. Thus, the Congress will convene at 125 Michigan Avenue, NE, Washington, DC 20017.


The congress will last 3 days and will begin on Friday, February 4, 2005 and finish on Sunday, February 6, 2005 at the end of the afternoon.


a. Status of the Situation in Haiti

Human Rights Rights of Women Rights of Children Health Economics Unions Press Internal and External Migration MINUSTAH: occupation force or force for the maintenance of peace Haiti: The Dictatorship of the International Community The religious world facing the current situation in Haiti

b. The Solidarity movement and Advocacy work

c. The principle of self-determination of a people and the current situation in Haiti

d. The basic tactics and strategies for the working class and pro-democracy sectors given the current political struggle in Haiti.

e. Participation of the Diaspora and friends of Haiti


The different materials presented at the Congress will appear in a publication in no more than 3 months time.


The "KONGRé BWA KAYIMAN 2005" is a non-lucrative activity. Therefore, to cover the expenses associated with organizing such congress-, the organizing committee call upon the solidarity of each and every to support this project. As a result, we are asking everyone to pay a minimum registration fee. However, we also welcome any contribution that may assist us in making this project a success. For instant, the registration fee will enable us to cover some of the following expenses:

Administrative expenses Transportation Breakfasts (2), Lunches to 12:30 h (2) and Snacks (4) Opening and Closing Ceremonies Publication of the Acts of the Congress...etc

Please Note: The registration fee is divided in three (3) categories and they are as followed:

Organization: US $ 100.00

Individual: US $ 50.00

Student and Senior Citizen*: US $ 30.00 *(Senior citizen must be 65 years old and more - student and senior citizen must show proper identification during check-in)

NB. Every participant will be responsible for his or her dinner.


The represented organizations that are on the Organizing Committee are:

Fondasyon Trant Septanm Fondasyon Mapou (FondMapou) Haiti Action Committee Haitian Lawyers Leadership Network Haitian Initiative for Democracy


The organizations that are sponsoring Congress Bwa Kayiman are as followed:

Vanguard Foundation Ecumenical Program on Central America and the Caribbean (EPICA) Institute for Justice and Democracy in Haiti (IJDH) TransAfrica Forum Let Haiti Live Coalition: for a Just U.S. Policy Vwa Zansèt April6Vt Citizens' Lobby

Complete Registration Form may be fax, e-mail, or send via regular mail to:

Fax: 202-332-1184 For more information call Email: kongrebwakayiman@yahoo.com 301-871-6082 lovinskypa@yahoo.fr 301-871-4738 eugenia@fondasyonmapou.org Our mailing address is:

Kongrè Bwa Kayiman 2005 C/o Fondasyon Mapou P.O. Box 33724 Washington, DC 20033-3724

DO NOT FORGET TO ENCLOSE THE REGISTRATION FEE. Please make check payable to Fondasyon Mapou and write Kongrè Bwa Kayiman in the memo line


We encourage participants who have friends and/or family in the DC Area to arrange for themselves to stay overnight. However, the organizing committee will have at least two hotel names available for participants to reserve room from at a discounted price. We will attempt to secure hotels that are accessible via public transportation and within a reasonable distance of the organized Congress. Each participant will be responsible for his or her hotel fee. The minimum price for a hotel room in this area is between $80.00 and $120.00. We suggest that participants contact others that you know will attend the congress to share space with in an attempt to minimize the cost.



Friday - February 4, 2005

12:00 PM - 17:00 PM Arrival of participants and check-in

Saturday - February 5, 2005

08:30 AM - 09:30 AM Opening and Introduction

09:30 AM - 11:30 AM Major Interventions

11:30 AM - 12:30 PM Workshop

12:30 PM - 13:30 PM Lunch

13:30 PM - 14:00 PM Workshop Groups Presentation

14:00 PM- 16:30 PM Presentations

16:30 PM - 18:00 PM Presentation of the Resolution Draft and Workshop

Sunday - February 6, 2005

09:00 AM - 09:30 AM Workshop Groups Presentation

09:30 AM - 11:00 AM Major Interventions

11:00 AM - 12:00 AM Workshop

12:00 PM - 13:00 PM Lunch

13:00 PM - 13:30 PM Workshop Groups Presentation

13:30 PM- 15:00 PM Special Presentations

15:00 PM - 16:00 PM Presentation of the Resolution and Feedback

Closing Ceremony of the Congress

Red wine (symbolism)

Monday - February 7 2005

11:00 AM Capitol Hill

Joint Press Conference the organizers of Kongrè Bwa Kayiman in conjunction with the Honorable Maxine Waters, Barbara Lee, John Conyers, Randall Robinson, Actor Danny Glover and others.


When we refer to the historical data, which show that the factors having given birth to the process of the Haitian revolution were internal to the island of Haiti, the idea that the Haitian revolution is the daughter of the French revolution, can no longer be held, even if we have to recognize that there were accelerating factors between the former and the latter. The colonial slave system functioned with its own contradictions, which rendered it susceptible to engender its own dynamic of destabilization.

Our ancestors never accepted the conditions of an abject, subhuman life, which was imposed on them by the colonists. Since, the crossing from the coasts of the Motherland (Africa) to the point, which the conquerors called the New World, our ancestors had begun to rebel, throwing themselves into the sea, preferring to die rather than go live in captivity in an unknown land. All kinds of techniques of sabotage were used to put an end to this system in which they were living like animals. In the colony, groups of slaves abandoned the plantations to go take refuge in the mountains and carry out swift raids on the plain of the plantations to burn them, assassinate the colonists, and free the slaves that were found there. This was the runaway slave (marronage) the "Maroon", movement begun very early in the colony by Cacique Henry in Bahoruco and started the beginning of a true guerilla war. The most famous of the Maroon chiefs was Francois Mackandal. There were others as well such as Polydor, Colas Jambe Coupée, Padre Jean who sent shivers through the colony by the influence that they exercised over the slaves as chiefs of Maroon groups.

Each group of Maroon Blacks had its own chief and led a very hard life in the colonial army. These guerilla actions, even though they were carried out a little all over the colony and caused a lot of material damage to the colony, could not shake up the repressive system. These were isolated actions. This guerilla approach went on a long while until the day when our ancestors understood the necessity of uniting, of constituting a single force, in order to make a common front against this system based on the most shameless form of injustice. This realization gave birth to the First Congress of "Bwa KAYIMAN" (Crocodile Woods) of 1791.

Bwa Kayiman (Crocodile Woods) is a region situated on Lenorman de Mezy's plantation in the North Department of Haiti. It was the setting of the First Congress, which brought together the principal chiefs of the Maroons of the island of Haiti at the instigation of the Voodoo Priest Boukman. Historians talk about the Ceremony of BWA KAYIMAN. A Voodoo ceremony, meeting of the chiefs of Maroons bands, BWA KAYIMAN was a multilevel congress. The media of today would speak of a " Conference or Summit."

Historians have the tendency to retain only a single moment out of all the important moments of this congress. Right in the middle of the congress under the sky the slaves were all assembled when a terrible storm tore through the air. The thunderbolts sparkled with their staggering lightening flashes in a sky heavy with low-lying dark clouds. Suddenly a torrential rain gushed forth flooding the ground and violent winds bent the trees over, looking like they were moaning. The branches broke and fell on the ground with crashes. In the middle of this terrifying scene with those in attendance immobilized, seized by a holy fear, saw an old Negro woman appear from nowhere. While she sang, her body was in the throes of a huge quaking movement. She twisted and turned round and round. At the same time, she swung a huge cutlass around her head. A huge black hog was brought to her whose snorting was lost in the roaring of the storm. While she mounted the black beast, with a quick gesture, the priestess plunged her cutlass into the throat of the pig. The blood, which ran from the animal that was in spasms, was collected in a wide tin bowl and distributed to the chiefs of the bands who in turn drank a mouthful. Swearing to live free or die, they signed the pact of blood that united them one to another. It was the oath of Bwa Kayiman.

During the Congress of Bwa Kayiman there were also times when strategies were designed to put in place a single clandestine command structure and when they set upon determining a single date for the general uprising of the slaves in the whole colony.

The congress took place August 14, 1791 and eight days after, August 22, 1791 in the middle of the night the revolt began. The whole colony woke up in a real pandemonium. A gigantic fire began devouring the plantations. From North to South, from East to West, armed with torches and all sorts of weapons that they were able to find or to make, the slaves came down from the hills, invaded and burned the houses and the plantations before abandoning them. They killed the whites that they met. This uprising marked a turning point in the movement of slaves against the colonial system. And rightly so historians consider it as the beginning of the unleashing of the wars of independence.

5. - Solidarity for Haiti 2004 Conference January 3, 2004, Port-au-Prince Press Release

On Saturday January 3, 2004 Fondasyon 30 Septanm (Haiti) with the Haiti Action Committee (USA) convened the Solidarity For Haiti 2004 Conference. A group of more than 100 people, from Haiti, Africa, Europe and North America coming from over thirty organizations met to discuss how to support democracy in Haiti, and to fight disinformation about current events in Haiti.

We sons and daughters of Haiti and true friends of Haiti, who came and saw with our own eyes how the vast majority of the Haitian people celebrated the bicentennial with pride, and in peace, declare:

1) Our engagement to work with the people of Haiti to end social exclusion in Haiti;

2) Our commitment to work with the Haitian people to protect their sovereignty, including: a) the right of the Haitian people to elect their own leaders; b) the obligation of foreign diplomats to respect national and international laws (including the 1963 Vienna Convention) concerning their activities in Haiti; c) the right of the Haitian people to be free from foreign meddling, including financing of groups fomenting violence and social conflict in Haiti;

3) Our commitment to help the Haitian people force the former colonial powers to return funds taken from Haiti (reparations). Especially France, which crippled the Haitian economy with the so-called debt of independence, which Haiti was forced to pay over 100 years (restitution of $21 billion); as well as the United States, which plundered Haiti's national reserves during the nineteen years of occupation (1915-1934).

4) Our commitment to help the Haitian people achieve political stability, and our unequivocal support for the Constitution's 5 year presidential mandate- not one day less, not one day more.

5) Our commitment to help the Haitian people invest in peace and overcome fear, making 2004 a YEAR OF PILGRIMAGE FOR ALL PEOPLE WHO LOVE FREEDOM to come and support Haiti, the Mother of Liberty.
Members of the following groups participated in the Conference

10th Department Organization for Haitian Empowerment (USA/Haiti) AKASAN: Ayisyen K Ap Soutni Ayisyen Nètalkole (Canada) Association Jeunes, Ouvriers, Universitaires, et Paysans Haitiens (AJOUPA) (Haiti/USA) CIJ (Haiti) Coalition Against Police Abuse (USA) Collectif Etudiant Haitien (Haiti) Crowing Rooster Arts (USA) CSTP/SSH (Haiti) Confederation des Travailleurs Haitiens (Haiti) Fanm Viktim Leve Kanpe (Haiti) Fondasyon 30 Septanm (Haiti) Federation des Transporteurs Publiques Haitiens (Haiti) Global Exchange (USA) Global Justice (USA) Haiti Solidarity Network (USA) Haiti Action Committee (USA) Haiti Progres (USA) Jaku Konbit (Canada) KONSA (Haiti) Let Haiti Live Campaign (Haiti/Canada/USA) National Lawyer's Guild (USA) NOTA (Haiti) Oganizasyon Fanmi Lavalas (Haiti/USA) Partners in Health (Haiti/USA/Peru) Pax Christi (Haiti/USA) Radio Ginen Dizyèm (Haiti/USA) Radio Nouveaute de Boston (USA) Rezo Kominikasyon Pou Avansman Demokrasi (Haiti) Rezo Intenet Kreyoles (Canada/USA) SODIMIN (Haiti) SOPUDEP (Haiti) Tele-Haiti Diaspo (USA) Urban Institute for Pro-Active Social Change (USA) Veye-Yo (USA)

For Authentication:

___________________ Lovinsky Pierre-Antoine Fondasyon 30 Septanm ___________________

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