The IADL bureau met in Paris and examined the situation of political prisoners in Haiti.

Whereas the IADL resolved on April 12, 2006, during its Bureau meeting in Havana Cuba, to welcome the new President of Haiti René PREVAL, and noted that “during the February 7, 2006 elections, the Haitian people gave a lesson in democracy to the entire world by electing, in the first round, President Rene Préval”;

Whereas the IADL also resolved on April 12, 2006, to reaffirm the resolution of the General Assembly of the IADL passed at the Paris Congress in 2005 and the resolution passed at the IADL Bureau Meeting in Sofia, Bulgaria urging the release of all political prisoners arrested by the unconstitutional Interim Government of Haiti (IGH, 2004-2006);

Whereas, many political prisoners and prisoners of conscience have been released since the inauguration of President Préval in April 2006;

Whereas, two and one-half years later, several political prisoners arrested by the IGH remain in prison or are out of prison on only provisional release that may be revoked at any time, over halfway through President Préval’s term;

Whereas former Prime Minister Yvon Neptune spent two years in prison on illegal, politically-motivated charges, and has now spent over two years more on provisional release, with the threat of immediate re-imprisonment hanging over his head;

Whereas the Inter-American Court of Human Rights (IACHR), in its decision on the case of Yvon Neptune v. Haiti, issued on May 6, 2008, called Mr. Neptune’s continued persecution “absolute judicial insecurity,” and ordered the State of Haiti to end the abuse of Mr. Neptune’s due process rights “immediately;”

Whereas the threat of re-imprisonment prevents Mr. Neptune from participating in normal political, professional or personal activities;

Whereas the American Association of Jurists and the National Lawyers Guild of the United States formally urged the State of Haiti to comply with the IACHR decision in July, 2008;

Whereas the State of Haiti has taken no known steps in the seven months since May, 2008 to comply with the IACHR’s decision and end Mr. Neptune’s persecution;

Whereas political prisoner Ronald Dauphin has been imprisoned without trial since March 1, 2004, a period of over four and one-half years; and his case has had no progress in the trial court since September, 2005, a period of over three years;

Whereas the extensive confinement in the conditions of Haiti’s prisons, which the IACHR called “inhuman,” has led to the deterioration of Mr. Dauphin’s health, and the death of one of his co-defendants, Wantales Lormejuste;

The IADL resolves as follows:

1) to congratulate President Préval on the release of political prisoners since his inauguration;

2) to urge President Préval, Prime Minister Michele Pierre-Louis and Minister of Justice Jean Joseph Exumé to take every possible legal measure to free all remaining political prisoners in Haiti’s jails immediately, and to ensure that the cases of all politically-active defendants arrested by the IGH are either immediately tried or dismissed;

3) to urge President Préval, Prime Minister Michele Pierre-Louis and Minister of Justice Jean Joseph Exumé to take all appropriate steps to comply with the Inter-American Court of Human Rights’ decision in Yvon Neptune v. Haiti, issued on May 6, 2008;

4) to urge all IADL members, especially the American Association of Jurists and the National Lawyers Guild to take all appropriate action to support the above resolutions.

Paris, France, December13-14, 2008