1. Report on alleged killings by Haitian National Police and the response of State authorities (English and French version)
The Human Rights Section of MINUSTAH (HRS) has a mandate to monitor and investigate human rights violations, such as killings committed by representatives of State authorities, and to issue public reports on its findings. The HRS is also mandated to work closely with the Haitian police and judiciary and, at their request, provide support in responding to violations and preventing their recurrence.
Since October 2011, the HRS has received multiple reports of killings allegedly committed by members of the Haitian National Police (HNP), including allegations of summary executions. From January to June 2011 the HRS conducted in depth investigations into five separate incidents that occurred within the Port-au-Prince metropolitan area between October 2010 and May 2011, involving the deaths of eight people, allegedly committed by at least 16 Haitian police officers. The cases detailed in this report and investigated by the HRS represent only a sample of the total cases of reported deaths at the hands of HNP officers in the course of the past year. Between October 2010 and November 2011, the HRS has received information regarding 70 police officers allegedly implicated in over 20 killings in the greater metropolitan area of Port-au-Prince. The HRS is currently undertaking investigations of these cases.
This report details the main findings of the HRS investigations into the five incidents, including information on actions taken by the competent State authorities in response to the incidents. The primary objectives of the report are: 1) to support State authorities in preventing and responding to human rights violations; 2) to provide the public with information on allegations of human rights violations and the Haitian authorities’ response.
Report on alleged killings [English | French]
2. Report on the torture and murder of Serge Démosthène (Version in French and Executive Summary in English)
In the morning of June 15, 2011, Serge Démosthène was arrested along with Feckel Plaisimond by police from the Petitionville Commissariat. 12 hours later he was taken unconscious to the general hospital in Port-au-Prince and pronounced dead on arrival. The Human Rights Section of MINUSTAH conducted a thorough investigation into the circumstances of the death of Serge Demosthenes. The results of this investigation are presented in this report, as well as the findings and recommendations for the Haitian authorities. The findings question the Haitian authorities’ compliance with the right to life, the right to be free from torture, and norms governing arrest, as well as respect for judicial independence.
Serge Démosthène and Feckel Plaisimond were allegedly tortured in the Petionville Commissariat in order to make them confess their guilt in the alleged killing of Guiteau Toussaint, director of the Banque Nationale de Credit, June 12, 2011. Serge Démosthène died as a result of the torture. Feckel Plaisimond was released after several months of detention. The report highlights the involvement of the Commissaire and police officers based in the Petionville Commissariat, as well as the then public prosecutor of Port-au-Prince.
The report also finds that the investigation of the internal affairs, Inspectorate General of the Haitian National Police (HNP), into the death of Serge Démosthène has caused tension with the leadership, the Directorate General of the HNP, which raises the question of the independence of the Inspectorate General. Finally, the report highlights questions about judicial independence during this investigation.
Report on the torture and murder of Serge Démosthène [French] Summary Executive [English]
3. Report on police and judicial response to rape in Port-au-Prince (English and French versions)
On 26 June 2012, the United Nations Stabilization Mission in Haiti’s (MINUSTAH) Human Rights Section (HRS) published a report focused on the response of the judiciary to cases of rape that were lodged in five police stations or sub-stations in the greater metropolitan area of Port-au-Prince between June and August 2010. The report is not intended to be an exhaustive study, but rather seeks to provide a sense of the challenges encountered by victims of rape when they try to access justice.
The research found that due to blockages in the criminal justice system not a single case was ruled on over the 18 month period reviewed. In general, the way in which the police and the judiciary handle criminal affairs affects the smooth processing of lodged complaints and leads to failure in the administration of justice and consequently to impunity, particularly in rape cases. In the report, the HRS recommends more particularly that law-makers provide a well-defined terminology of what legally constitutes a rape, adopt legislation protecting women, strengthen the capacities of police and the judiciary and endow the police with the necessary resources to properly conduct its investigations.
Report in [French] and [English]
4. Bi-annual report on the human rights situation in Haiti (January-June 2012)
Report in [French] and [English]
5. Bi-annual report on the human rights situation in Haiti (July-December 2012)
Report in [French] Executive Summary in English and Creole - Press release