Nº 13/05

IACHR to conduct on-site visit to haiti


          At the invitation of the Government of Haiti, the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights (IACHR) will conduct an on-site visit to the Republic of Haiti from April 18-22, 2005 in order to observe and receive information concerning the human rights situation in the country, including the issue of the administration of justice.


          The IACHR is an independent organ of the Organization of American States (OAS), with principal responsibility for promoting the observance and protection of human rights in the Hemisphere. The seven members of the Commission are elected in their personal capacity by the OAS General Assembly for a four-year term. The Commission’s terms of reference are derived from the OAS Charter and the American Convention on Human Rights, treaties ratified by the Republic of Haiti.


          The IACHR Delegation will consist of Commission President and Rapporteur for Haiti Clare K. Roberts, Commission attorneys Ismene Zarifis and Brian Tittemore, and OAS Associate Staff Member and Romulo Gallegos fellow Ourania Georgoulas. The Delegation will also be assisted for part of its visit by OAS Associate Staff Member and University of Quebec at Montreal Law Professor Bernard Duhaime.


          While in Haiti, the Commission plans to meet with high-level government officials, members of civil society including national and international nongovernmental organizations and associations of lawyers and judges, and representatives of intergovernmental organizations, including the OAS Special Mission in Haiti, the UN Stabilization Mission in Haiti, and the Office of the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights.


          During its visit, the IACHR will be prepared to receive petitions from individuals who allege that their human rights, or the rights of other persons, have been violated. The petitions must be presented in writing. A sample form is available in the OAS National Office at 4 rue François, Musseau, Port-au-Prince, Haiti and on the Commission’s web site at During the visit, the Commission will have an office in the Hotel Montana in Pétion-ville, which will be open from 9:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. from April 18-22, 2005.


          At the end of its visit, the Commission will issue a further press release and will return to its Headquarters in Washington, D.C. to evaluate its findings.


          The Commission is grateful for the cooperation and the facilities provided by the Government of Haiti and by civil society organizations and institutions, and international organizations, including the OAS Special Mission, in the preparation of its visit.


Washington, D.C.  April 15, 2005