On Dec. 10 a Haitian court sentenced journalist Joseph Guyler Delva to one month in prison for alleged defamation and public insults against former senator Rudolph Boulos. Delva and his lawyer were not present at the trial, since it had been postponed several times. As of Dec. 18 Delva was free pending an appeal. On Dec. 15 he wrote that over the previous three weeks he had received a number of death threats, including two that mentioned Boulos’ name.
Delva is Secretary General of SOS Journalists and president of the Independent Commission to Support Investigations Into the Murders of Journalists (CIAPEAJ). In the fall of 2007 Delva wrote an article saying Boulos was holding his office illegally because of his dual Haitian-US citizenship; he also accused Boulos of involvement in the blocking of investigations into the April 2000 murder of radio journalist Jean Leopold Dominique. Delva received death threats and left the country for several weeks in November 2007. Amnesty International (AI) is asking for letters to the following officials calling for protection for Delva and a thorough and impartial investigation into the threats he has received:
President Rene Garcia Preval (fax +509 2228 2244)
Justice Minister Jean Joseph Exume (fax +509 2245 0474)
National Police Director Mario Andresol (fax +509 2245 7374)
Send copies to SOS Journalistes: firstname.lastname@example.org.
(Radio Kiskeya, Haiti, Dec. 11; Reporters sans Frontieres, Dec. 12; AI urgent action, Dec. 18 via Haiti Support Group)
From Weekly News Update on the Americas, Dec. 21
See our last post on Haiti.