We sign this statement to tell the world, and especially the Haitian people, that we are ashamed and outraged by the Canadian Government’s active participation in the February 29, 2004 Coup d’Etat that toppled the duly-elected Government of Haiti led by President Jean-Bertrand Aristide. On behalf of all Canadians, the great majority of whom are kept ignorant of this Coup and its aftermath, we sincerely apologize for the terrible, lasting damage it has caused.
Ten (10) years after the Coup, we sign this statement because there is disturbing and compelling evidence that:
1) Canada was centrally involved in planning the Coup. A year in advance, on January 31 and February 1, 2003, Canada hosted the Ottawa Initiative on Haiti. This controversial meeting was held at the Meech Lake Government Resort, near Gatineau, Québec, to plan and consolidate the Coup.
2) Canada took an active part in the actual forced removal from Haiti and exile to Africa of President Aristide. Canadian soldiers, notably those serving in Joint Task Force 2, were assigned by Canadian government leaders to join local paramilitary mercenaries and U.S. troops illegally deployed to Port-au-Prince, Haiti, to conduct the Coup d’État.
Records of the Canadian Parliament show that on March 10, 2004, ten days after the coup, Stockwell Day, then-foreign affairs critic for the Conservative opposition, declared in Parliament: “… we have an elected leader Aristide. We may not have wanted to vote for him… But the (Canadian) government makes a decision that there should be a regime change. It is a serious question that we need to address. That decision was based on what criteria? We must have this discussion…This was clearly a regime change. Whether we like to admit it or not, we took part.”
3) The Coup was followed by several documented massacres and arbitrary arrests of pro-democracy activists. It dismantled Haiti’s entire elected government structure, and U.S.-appointed post-coup regimes — backed financially, militarily and diplomatically by Canada — are marred by serious human rights abuses.
4) One of the most disastrous consequences of the Coup and subsequent U.N. tutelage is that Haiti, a country with no known cases of cholera for the past 100 years, now has one of the worst cholera epidemics in the world. The cholera death toll has already reached 8500 and as of January 2014, more than 700,000 have gotten sick from the deadly bacterium.
Several independent scientific studies unequivocally implicate the UN for introducing cholera to Haiti. According to these studies, UN soldiers stationed near Haiti’s La Mielle and Artibonite Rivers contaminated these major water sources in October 2010 with improperly disposed feces.
To date, the UN refuses to assume responsibility for this grave act of criminal negligence. We support the worthy efforts of human rights groups Bureau des Avocats Internationaux (BAI) and the Institute for Justice and Democracy in Haiti (IJDH) to seek redress from the UN for the thousands of victims of cholera in Haiti.
5) The grassroots pro-democracy movement in Haiti, which bravely overthrew the brutal dictatorship of Jean Claude Duvalier in 1986, has suffered major setbacks since the Coup took place. The people of Haiti are currently ruled by a U.S.-imposed neo-Duvalierist regime, under which the former dictator benefits from open support from powerful national and international allies. Duvalier has brazenly mocked his victims since his January 2011 return to U.N.-occupied Haiti.
Canada’s role in planning and carrying out the February 29, 2004 Coup d’État, and in the equally disastrous and illegal U.N. tutelage our government imposed on Haiti to consolidate the coup, is an ongoing source of misery and injustice for the Haitian people. We urge all Canadians, their organizations and representatives to take effective action to compel the foreign occupation forces to acknowledge and to make adequate amends for the harm they have caused the People of Haiti.
A Canadian Apology to Haiti
This petition is now closed.
End date: Mar 10, 2014
Signatures collected: 849
Signature goal: 1000
849 Rebecca McEvoy Antigonish, NS Student Mar 10, 2014 848 Mariah Richard Calgary Mar 10, 2014 847 Jessica Gens Montreal Mar 09, 2014 846 Adina Lyon Mar 08, 2014 845 Yuill Herbert Tatamagouche Mar 08, 2014 844 Jack East CR Communist Party of Canada (ML), Canadian Railworkers Union Mar 07, 2014 843 donald greig Owen Sound Mar 07, 2014 842 Scott Barber Mar 06, 2014 841 Srećko Vojvodić Toronto, ON Mar 06, 2014 840 Daphne Ben David Montreal Mar 05, 2014 839 Scott Fulmer Gloucester, Massachusetts Mar 05, 2014 838 yvan granger st-paul de ile aux noix aucune Mar 04, 2014 837 Stan Squires vancouver Mar 04, 2014 836 Dawn Paley Journalist Mar 04, 2014 835 Charles Boylan Vancouver CPC(ML), Vancouver Co-Op Radio, Chair, Human Rights & International Solidarity Committee, Local 21 Federation of Post Secondary Educators Mar 04, 2014 834 Garnet Colly Montreal Editor - New Horizons Bulletin Mar 04, 2014 833 Rob Maguire Vancouver Mar 03, 2014 832 Derek Hogue Winnipeg Mar 03, 2014 831 Margaret Flanders Mar 03, 2014 830 RoseMary Peddie Guelph Mar 03, 2014 829 Juanita Burnett Mar 03, 2014 828 Ikenna Onyegbula Ottawa Mar 03, 2014 827 Simon Child Vancouver, BC Mar 02, 2014 826 Django Doucet Montreal Mar 02, 2014 825 Chris Coculuzzi Toronto Mar 02, 2014 824 Nicolas Falcimaigne Trois-Pistoles Mar 02, 2014 823 Rana Hamadeh Ottawa Mar 02, 2014 822 wade bridger paradise Mar 02, 2014 821 Martin Bracey Toronyo Mar 02, 2014 820 Serge Bouchereau Montréal Mar 02, 2014 819 Nesley Lambert Somerville. Massachusetts N/A Mar 01, 2014 818 Jim McKibbin Toronto Jim McKibbin & Associates Mar 01, 2014 817 Andrew Hunter Nottingham Private Citizen Mar 01, 2014 816 M Ilieski Mar 01, 2014 815 Bill Shpikula Toronto, Ontario, Canada Mar 01, 2014 814 Hilina Hailu Montreal Mar 01, 2014 813 Wendell Fields Hamilton Mar 01, 2014 812 Sam Heaton Ottawa Mar 01, 2014 811 Joseph Somers Welland Mar 01, 2014 810 Sean Monaghan Mar 01, 2014 809 Jim Wright Edmonton Mar 01, 2014 808 Gerard Di Trolio Toronto, Ontario, Canada Mar 01, 2014 807 Jeff Hodgson Edmonton Mar 01, 2014 806 Michel Chossudovsky Montreal Centre de recherche sur la mondialisation Mar 01, 2014 805 Auntie Adjeley Accra, Ghana Mar 01, 2014 804 robert mcfarland peterborough private citizen Feb 28, 2014 803 Maria Elena Mesa Toronto Feb 28, 2014 802 Pauline Richards Feb 28, 2014 801 Naureen Ali Vancouver Feb 28, 2014 800 heidi verheul Feb 28, 2014