By Haiti Action Committee
Haiti Action Committee denounces the recent massacres, home burnings and disappearances that took place against residents of Bele, Solino and nearby neighborhoods of Port-au-Prince. We strongly condemn ongoing U.S. support for the unelected puppet Ariel Henry regime which is widely opposed by the Haitian people. We call on the Biden Administration to stop arming, equipping, training and funding the Haitian National Police which is being deployed to terrorize the popular movement and which is complicit in the violent assault on residents of Bele and other neighborhoods.
According to witnesses and media reports, on February 28, 2023 members of the G9 federation of gangs/death squads armed with assault rifles launched an all-out attack against these neighborhoods, shooting residents, burning down their homes – some with the occupants inside, including a mother and child and others who were not able to escape. As of March 4th, 2023, over 60 were estimated to have been killed, with over 50 said to have been disappeared.
Similar to the Lasalin massacre in 2018, witnesses reported seeing members of the Haitian National Police accompany the death squads, shooting residents, burning homes as well as transporting G9 federation death squads in armored police personnel carriers. In addition, government heavy machinery was observed demolishing houses. Appeals for help to the Ariel Henry government, including the chief of police, have remained unanswered as repeated killings and home burnings continued through March 8. All of this has taken place in downtown Port-au-Prince within earshot of Haitian and occupation authorities who remained silent. People in the neighborhoods are furious that for the past four years, they have been the victims of G9 snipers,resulting in a number of injuries and death in the area – and that no action was taken by the authorities.
The majority population has never stopped resisting the kidnapping/coup d’etat of February 29, 2004, against the popularly elected President Jean-Bertrand Aristide and the Fanmi Lavalas government. For the past 19 years since that date followed by the start of the US-UN occupation, living conditions in the country have greatly worsened as corrupt puppet governments have slashed spending on healthcare and education, and have increased taxes while implementing policies that decreased real wages. Prices for food and basic necessities have more than quadrupled and fuel subsidies have been eliminated resulting in higher transportation costs and a spiraling rise in the overall cost of living. Journalists, clergy, peasant-farmers, students, workers and others raising their voices in protest have been met with beatings, incarceration, rape, assassinations and mass killings. Like the notorious Lasalin massacre (see video), police, security forces and affiliated paramilitary forces commonly referred to as “gangs” are wrecking homes and accelerating land grabs.
Take action! Contact your Congresspersons and demand that they pressure the Biden Administration to immediately implement the following:
- Stop supporting Haitian dictator Ariel Henry
- Stop U.S. funding for the Haitian National Police and military.
- Stop the unconscionable attacks on refugees.
Email or phone U.S. House of Representatives – Telephone: 202-225-3121
U.S. Senate – Telephone: 202-224-3121
Sample script: I’m calling on the United States to stop supporting the unelected dictator Ariel Henry in Haiti, whose government supports death squads that recently attacked the community of Bele in Port-au-Prince, using government equipment to destroy houses, in some cases burning people alive. I oppose any funding for the Haitian National Police and military, and call for a humane response to the refugee crisis that is only made more dire by the current political situation.
For more information:
Neocolonial Dictatorship, Paramilitary and Police Terror in Haiti – Seth Donnelly, Haiti Action Committee
Haiti: The Truth Speaks For Itself – Robert Roth, Haiti Action Committee
19 Years After the Coup d’Etat – Fanmi Lavalas Feb. 28th Statement