GOVERNMENT OF THE REPUBLIC OF HAITI
GENERAL SECRETARIAT OF THE ORGANIZATION OF AMERICAN STATES
THE SPECIAL MISSION
THE ORGANIZATION OF AMERICAN STATES
STRENGTHEN DEMOCRACY IN HAITI
The Government of the Republic of Haiti (the Government of Haiti) and the
General Secretariat of the Organization of American States (GS/OAS), (‘’the
Parties’’) have agreed as follows:
The purpose of this Agreement is to establish terms and conditions to
enable the OAS Special Mission to Strengthen Democracy in Haiti (the Mission) to
carry out its work adequately, in collaboration with the Caribbean Community (CARICOM),
and in accordance with AG/RES. 1831 (XXXI-O/01) and CP/RES.806 (1303/02) corr.1
of January 16, 2002.
The Mission’s work shall cover the areas of security, justice, human
rights and the development of democracy, good governance, and
institution-building. The document
detailing the balanced distribution of the Mission’s work in those areas,
which is being consulted with CARICOM, other OAS member states, including Haiti,
and Permanent Observers, will be incorporated into this Agreement, once that
document has been adopted by the duly authorized representatives of the Parties.
The Mission’s work is directed at investigating and assessing the
situation and assisting the Government and people of Haiti in
strengthening their democratic system and institutions.
In fulfillment of this Agreement, the Government of Haiti
Mission and its members free and safe access to all elements of Haitian
politics and civil society, including the press and the opposition
parties. Likewise, the
Government of Haiti, within the framework of Haitian law and in accordance
with the Charter of the OAS, shall provide the Mission and its members
with all facilities to exercise their functions including free movement
throughout Haitian territory and full access to all governmental organs,
agencies, and entities and to their records and documents.
Among the activities to be carried out by the Mission and its
members are the following:
To conduct the investigations and evaluations that they deem
To make the recommendations and to provide the assistance they
consider relevant; and
The GS/OAS shall report periodically to the OAS Permanent Council
and to the Government of Haiti on the
activities of the Mission. The
GS/OAS will keep the public appropriately informed through the media.
OF THE MISSION
The GS/OAS shall inform the Government of Haiti of the names of the
individuals making up the Mission, who shall be duly identified by an OAS
identification card specially prepared for the Mission, in accordance with
Article 9.1 of this Agreement.
The OAS Secretary General shall appoint the members of the Mission,
who shall perform the functions necessary for the satisfactory
implementation of this Agreement.
AND IMMUNITIES OF THE MISSION
The privileges and immunities of the Mission and its members shall
be those accorded to the OAS, to its organs, and to their staff, pursuant
to Articles 133, 134, 135, and 136 of the OAS Charter, the instrument of
ratification of which was deposited by the Government of Haiti on March
28, 1951, the Agreement on Privileges and Immunities of the Organization
of American States, the instrument of ratification of which was deposited
by the Haitian Government on March 13, 1952, and the Agreement on the
Operations of the Office of the GS/OAS in Port-au-Prince, signed by the
Government of Haiti and the GS/OAS on March 8, 1972.
The property and effects of the Mission in any part of Haiti and in
the possession of any person shall enjoy immunity against any type of
judicial proceeding, save in those specific cases for which said immunity
is expressly waived. However,
it is understood that said waiver of immunity shall not have the effect of
subjecting such property and effects to any type of execution measure.
The premises occupied by the Mission shall be inviolable. Moreover, their property and effects, in any part of the
territory of Haiti and in the possession of any person, shall enjoy
immunity against search and seizure, confiscation, expropriation, and
against any form of intervention, be it executive, administrative,
judicial, or legislative.
The files of the Mission and all documents pertaining thereto or in
its possession shall be inviolable, wheresoever they are located.
The Mission shall be: (a) exempt from any type of internal
taxation, it being understood, however, that they may not claim any type
of tax exemption that is in fact a remuneration for public services; (b)
exempt from any type of customs duty and of prohibition and restriction in
respect of articles and publications that they import or export for their
official use. It is understood, however, that the articles they import
duty free may only be sold within the country in accordance with the
conditions agreed upon with the Government of Haiti; and (c) exempt from
ordinances, regulation, or moratoria of any kind. Moreover, they may have
currency of any type, carry their accounts in any foreign currency, and
transfer their funds in foreign currency.
The Mission may set up and operate in Haitian territory an
autonomous radiocommunications system for the purpose of providing a
permanent connection among the members of the Mission and the vehicles
used by the Mission and its offices, between the offices and central
headquarters, and between the central headquarters and the headquarters of
the GS/OAS in Washington, D.C., and to that end the Government of Haiti
shall provide all technical and administrative collaboration deemed
necessary. This provision is
subject to authorization by the Conseil National de Télécommunications (CONATEL),
which authorization shall not be unreasonably delayed or denied.
OF THE MISSION
For the period during which they exercise their functions and
during their trips to and from Haiti, the members of the Mission shall
enjoy the following privileges and immunities:
Immunity from personal detention or arrest; and immunity from any
type of legal proceeding in respect of their actions and statements, be
they oral or written, done in the performance of their functions;
The inviolability of any paper or documents;
The right to communicate with the GS/OAS via radio, telephone,
telegraph, satellite, or other means, and to receive documents and
correspondence through messengers or in sealed pouches, enjoying for that
purpose the same privileges and immunities accorded to diplomatic mail,
messengers, or pouches;
The right to utilize for their movements, any means of
transportation, be it airborne, waterborne, or overland, throughout the
Exemption, in respect of their persons and those of their spouses
and children, from any type of immigration restriction and registration of
aliens and any type of national service in Haiti;
They shall enjoy the greatest possible freedom in the transfer of
funds and in the negotiation anywhere and in any form of foreign currency,
checks, cash, or foreign coins or bills that they receive as compensation
or benefits for their services, without their being subject to
limitations, restrictions, or inspection or control measures that may be
established in this regard; and
The same immunities and privileges in respect of their personal
effects as are accorded to diplomatic envoys.
OF THE MEMBERS OF THE MISSION
The Government of Haiti undertakes to take the necessary measures
to ensure the safety and protection of the members of the Mission, as
regards both their physical safety and that of their possessions.
The members of the Mission undertake to cooperate with the civilian
and police authorities charged with their safety and protection.
WITH THE AUTHORITIES
The members of the Mission shall cooperate with the competent
Haitian authorities to prevent any occurrence of abuse in respect of the
specified privileges and immunities. Similarly, the competent authorities
shall do whatever is possible to supply the cooperation requested of them
by the Mission.
Without prejudice to the immunities and privileges accorded, the
observers shall respect the laws and regulations in effect in Haiti.
The Government of Haiti and the GS/OAS shall take any measures
necessary to procure an amicable arrangement in the proper settlement of:
Any disputes that arise in contracts or other questions of private
Any disputes to which the members of the Mission may be party in
respect of matters in which they enjoy immunity.
OF THE PRIVILEGES AND IMMUNITIES
The privileges and immunities are granted to the Mission and its
members in order to safeguard their independence in the exercise of their
functions of investigating, evaluating, and assisting the Government and
the people of Haiti to strengthen their democratic systems and
institutions, and not for personal gain or to perform activities in
violation of Haitian law. Therefore,
the OAS Secretary General shall waive the privileges and immunities of
these in the event that, in his judgment, the exercise of those privileges
and immunities obstructs the course of justice and when they may be waived
without harming the interests of the OAS.
The GS/OAS shall supply each member of the Mission, as well as the
local contract staff, with a numbered identification card, which shall
show the full name, date of birth, position or rank, and a photograph.
Further, the members of the Mission shall be obliged to present that
identification card when the Haitian authorities so request.
Government of Haiti recognizes the "official travel document"
issued by the GS/OAS as a valid and sufficient document for purposes of
travel by the members of the Mission. The Government of Haiti shall issue
to the members of the Mission the corresponding diplomatic visa allowing
them to enter, remain, and leave the country as often and for as long a
period as necessary until the end of the Mission.
Agreement may be amended by mutual consent by the Government of Haiti and
10.3. This Agreement shall enter into force on the date of its
signature and shall remain in force for one year thereafter, and may be
renewed upon the written agreement of both Parties.
WITNESS WHEREOF, the representatives of the Government of Haiti and the
GS/OAS, duly authorized for that purpose, sign this Agreement in two
originals in the city of Port-au-Prince, Haiti, on this 1st day of March
of the year two thousand and two.
FOR THE GOVERNMENT OF
FOR THE GENERAL SECRETARIAT
OF THE ORGANIZATION OF
Luigi R. Einaudi
of Foreign Affairs and Worship
Assistant Secretary General