The OAS-CARICOM Joint Election Observation Mission in Haiti deplores the significant increase in pre-election violence which has tarnished the last days of the election campaign.
The Mission reminds the presidential candidates, political parties and political platforms which have signed the Code of Conduct for the Elections that they committed themselves, inter alia, to promote an atmosphere of tolerance during the election campaign as well as to renounce the use of weapons, physical or verbal aggression, and to respect the right of rival parties and their supporters to meet and to campaign without disruption throughout the country. The Mission calls on all political leaders, whether or not they have signed the electoral good conduct agreement, to demonstrate responsible leadership by publicly calling on their supporters to remain calm and to display restraint and tolerance.
The Mission strongly condemns the acts of violence, intimidation, vandalism and the torching of electoral offices, and in particular the confrontation between the supporters of “Respé” and “Inité” which led to the death of two persons. Nevertheless, the JEOM wishes to underline that its observers have been present at a large number of well conducted public rallies during the election campaign. This illustrates the democratic and pacific commitment displayed by citizens in general.
The Joint Mission calls on the Haitian National Police to do all in their power to curb this increase in violence and to take the necessary steps to prevent confrontations, especially when they have been alerted in advance of political rallies. In this way they will contribute to the maintenance of a peaceful pre-election environment and to the peace of mind necessary for voters to carry out their right to vote on Election Day.