Haitian Journalists Condemn Martelly for Threats (AlterPresse article)English translation of the statement posted on AlterPresse by Ronald Colbert, General Manager of the Board of Trustees:
Declaration of the Médialternatif Group, dated March 11, 2011The Group Médialternatif (GM) takes very seriously the threats uttered to the editor and journalist of this agency affiliated with AlterPresse, Gotson Pierre, and consequently with the whole of the journalistic world, by the candidate for the [Haitian] presidency Joseph Michel Martelly, at the time of the televised debate of Wednesday March 9, 2011.
Questioned about his management abilities in light of a document made pubic concerning his debts to US banks and how that reflects on his ability to assume leadership responsibilities, Martelly launched into a fit of anger: “Kite L vini/voye yo voye L/M ap tan Li” ("Let's go! Bring them. Bring it. I'm ready.") Martelly explicitly evoked possible reprisals of “the street”.
Should it be believed that Martelly has a list of journalists who he does not favor who he believes are acting to discredit him?
The serious declarations of the candidate should be considered, rightly, as threats to the freedom of the press and of expression, which are assets going back to February 7, 1986, the fall of the sanguinary dictatorship of Duvalier.
The GM welcomes the vigilance of the national press and international community, which upholds these principles, and invites the community as a whole, as well as the entire enterprise to determine it's own conclusions from the aggressive position towards the media and journalists, taken by Martelly, who aspires to be the presidential chairman of the republic.
The Médialternatif Group reserves the right to take appropriate measures vis-a-vis the resurgence of institutional threats to the free exercise of the journalistic profession, guaranteed by the Constitution of March 29, 1987.
For the Board of trustees of the GM,
Towards the end of the video above, Martelly shakes his fist at journalists declaring: "It's war. Let's go to war!"
Journalist Jean Richard Louis-Charles was killed on Wednesday, Feb. 9, 2011, an apparent the victim of an attempted robbery.
Louis-Charles is the first journalist to be killed in the Western Hemisphere this year according to Reporters Without Borders. RWB said they are "troubled" by the circumstances of Louis-Charles death and await the conclusions of the investigation. The other man killed at the scene was Jean Wilner Duperval, one of the three suspected robbers. According to Haitian police at the time, two accomplices were still being sought and they were to deploy undercover police to try to curb crime in the area.
Father of two children, Jean-Louis Richard Charles was shot twice in the head and neck Wednesday at noon at Capois Street (downtown Port-au-Prince) shortly after completing a transaction at a commercial bank.
His alleged killer, was identified as Jean Wilner Duperval, a prison escapee, who was immediately shot down by a plainclothes policeman.
According to the spokesman of the National Police, Frantz Lerebours, the man, who was actively sought, had escaped from the National Penitentiary, the civil prison in the capital, along with nearly 5,000 other prisoners in the minutes that followed the devastating earthquake of January 12, 2010.Radio Kiskeya (Feb. 11, 2011)
La Presse en Haïti doit prendre garde aux menaces de Michel Martelly ("The Press in Haiti must take care against threats made by Michel Martelly" (AlterPresse)
Haitian media should be wary of Michel Martelly’s threats (English)