Restitution: Toussaint Louverture Plateforme


Restitution by France to Haiti
for the Ransom Paid for its Independence

Article - Toussaint Louverture Plateforme

Article - The debt of independence: < follow this link
a new sit-in in front of the French Embassy to demand restitution and reparations

Port-au-Prince, April 11, 2003 -(AHP)- The "Toussaint Louverture Plateforme" announced plans to hold a sit-in Wednesday April 16 in front of the French Embassy in Port-au-Prince to support the initiatives seeking restitution from France in the amount of 21 billion dollars for the harm done to the country during the colonial period.

In a message given April 7th on the occasion of the commemoration of the bicentennial of the death of Toussaint Louverture, President Jean-Bertrand Aristide had pointed out that the Haitian authorities were required to pay 90 million francs in 1825 to the colonial capital in exchange for recognition of its independence.

The Director of the Toussaint Louverture Platform, Hugues Montoban, invited all sectors of the country to join his organization in calling on the French government to pay damages for having looted the country and having established what he called a regime of iron during the colonial period.

For his part, the September 30 Foundation characterized President Aristide's initiative as "just".

This is the initiative of a responsible Head of State, said Lovinsky Pierre Antoine, adding that France should take advantage of this opportunity to cleanse itself of this swindle.

COPAH (the Conference of Haitian Pastors) also supports the Haitian government's initiative.

A COPAH spokesperson, Ernst Pierre Vincent, voiced his hope that all sectors of the country will support these efforts of the Haitian authorities.

Ernst Pierre Vincent said that no sector should remain on the sidelines on this matter which concerns, he said, all Haitians without distinction of social situation or political affiliation.

"If France has supported the Haitian opposition that has been calling for reparations for violence committed on December 17, 2001 following a deadly attack on the National Palace, it should be willing today to pay compensation for all the exactions and all the looting committed by the French colonists and pay restitution to Haiti of the debt of independence", declared Ernst Pierre Vincent.

AHP April 11, 2003 1:40 PM


The debt of independence:

a new sit-in in front of the French Embassy to demand restitution and reparations


Port-au-Prince, April 22, 2003 -(AHP)- Hundreds of people took part in a new sit-in Tuesday in front of the Embassy of France in Port-au-Prince to demand that the French authorities pay restitution of the debt of independence.

These demonstrators responded to the appeal of a group of organizations including the Toussaint Louverture Plateforme and the September 30th Foundation. They declared that they were offering France the opportunity to cleanse itself of the crime of humanity that slavery represents.

They feel that France should pay restitution of $21.7 billion, today's equivalent, they say, of the 90 million gold francs France demanded of the Haitian State in 1825 in return for recognizing Haiti's independence.

The organizations supporting the request made by President Aristide at an event to commemorate the 200th anniversary of the death of Toussaint Louverture on April 7, 2003, are calling for reparations for all the crimes, plundering and other types of abuses committed by the colonists during the colonial period.

Several participants in the sit-in criticized the conduct of some officials of the Embassy who they say tore up posters of slaves in chains that had been put up on the walls of the Embassy during last week's sit-in.

The demonstrators also denounced some elements of the opposition and civil society for their refusal to understand that this struggle for reparations and against impunity concerns all Haitians.

" How can one wish to be more royalist than the king when France itself has already admitted that slavery is a crime against humanity", exclaimed a demonstrator, referring to the opposition which refuses, he said, to "support the cause of reparations due to political frustrations".

AHP April 22, 2003 2:10 PM