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UA 391/91: Haiti: Ill-treatment / legal concern: Raymond Toussaint

, Index number: AMR 36/025/1991

EXTERNAL (for general distribution) AI Index: AMR 36/25/91
Distr: UA/SC
UA 391/91 Ill-treatment/Legal Concern 12 November 1991
HAITI Raymond TOUSSAINT
Amnesty International is seriously concerned for the health and safety of
Raymond Toussaint, a member of the Comité National des Congrès des Mouvements
Démocratiques (KONAKOM), National Committee of Congress of Democratic
Movements, and a rural development group known as CODEP. He was arrested on
25 October 1991 and was reportedly ill-treated.
According to information received by Amnesty International, Raymond Toussaint
was arrested without a warrant by uniformed soldiers. They reportedly came
to his home in Petite Rivière de l'Artibonite, in Haiti's Artibonite Department,
and accused him of "spreading propaganda in favour of President Aristide".
Raymond Toussaint was taken to the army barracks in Petite Rivière where he
was reportedly severely beaten. He was subsequently transferred to Saint Marc
prison, where he is said to be in poor health because of ill-treatment. He
is allegedly being denied access to his lawyer or visits by his family.
BACKGROUND INFORMATION:
Troops overthrew the democratically elected government of President
Jean-Bertrand Aristide, who took office in Haiti on 7 February 1991, in a coup
d'Etat on Monday 30 September. Since then Amnesty International has learned
of widespread human rights violations committed by the security forces,
including a large number of extrajudicial executions, beatings and mass arrests
without warrant. Many of the victims included supporters of President Aristide
and members and leaders of grassroots organizations.
RECOMMENDED ACTION: Telegrams/telexes/faxes/airmail letters:
- expressing concern at the reported ill-treatment in custody of Raymond
Toussaint;
- asking that he be provided with immediate and adequate medical treatment
while in custody;
- asking for an investigation into allegations of ill-treatment, that the
results of the investigation be made public and that those found responsible
be brought to justice;
- asking for clarification of his legal situation and if detained for the
exercise of his freedom of expression, not involving the advocacy of violence,
urge that he be immediately and unconditionally released.
APPEALS TO:
1) Prime Minister:
Maître Jean-Jacques HONORAT Monsieur le Premier Ministre
Premier Ministre, Ministre Dear Prime Minister
des Affaires Etrangères
Présidence de la République de Haïti
Palais National, Port-au-Prince, Haïti
Telegrams: Premier Ministre Honorat, Port-au-Prince, Haiti
Faxes: + 509 22 1147
Page 2 of UA 391/91
2) Minister of Interior and Defence:
M. le Colonel Gracia JEAN Monsieur le Ministre
Ministre de l'Intérieur Dear Minister
et de la Défense Nationale
Palais des Ministères
Port-au-Prince, Haïti
Telegrams: Ministre de l'Interieur Jean, Port-au-Prince, Haiti
Telephone: + 509 22 9198 or 22 1090
Telexes: 20515 Dptindn
3) Commander of the Centre Military Department:
Monsieur le Général Raoul CEDRAS Monsieur le Général
Commandant-en-Chef des Forces Dear General
Armées d'Haïti
Grand Quartier Général des Forces Armées d'Haïti
Rue Geffrard
Port-au-Prince, Haïti
Telegrams: Comandant-en-Chef des Forces Armees Cedras, Port-au-Prince,
Haiti
Telephone: + 509 22 3935
Telexes: 20391 GQFADH
Faxes: + 509 23 9007 or + 509 23 9407
4) Minister of Justice:
Monsieur Antoine LECONTE Monsieur le Ministre
Ministère de la Justice Dear Minister
Cité de l'Exposition
Port-au-Prince, Haïti
Telegrams: Ministre de la Justice Leconte, Port-au-Prince, Haiti
Telephone: + 509 45 0474 or 45 1626
Telexes: 20166 Justice
COPIES TO:
Minister of Public Health:
Monsieur Greger JEAN-LOUIS
Ministre de la Santé
Publique et de la Population
Ministère de la Santé Publique et
de la Population
Palais des Ministères
Port-au-Prince, Haïti
Haiti en Marche (newspaper)
173 N.W. 94 St.
Miami
FL 33150, USA
Chamber of Deputies:
Monsieur le Président
Chambre des Députés
Assemblée National
Port-au-Prince, Haïti
President of the Senate:
Maître Eudrice RAYMOND
Président du Sénat
Assemblée Nationale
Port-au-Prince, Haïti
and to diplomatic representatives of Haïti in your country.
PLEASE SEND APPEALS IMMEDIATELY. Check with the International Secretariat
or your section if sending appeals after 24 December 1991.

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