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Free Father Jean-Juste

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20050724 | 02:49 pm

I received notice on Saturday that there would be a rally in "Little Haiti" Miami, Florida for Father Gerard Jean-Juste who was recently arrested in Haiti. My heart goes out the Haitian people and their struggle for what they want in their homeland. Like most people in the US I was unaware of Haiti's history and what they are going through now. Main stream media even in Miami does not report on much of what is going on in Haiti and what the Haitians in the United States are fighting for. Before Saturday I didn’t know who Father Gerard Jean-Juste was, so I will post below information I received from the "Free Father Gerard Jean-Juste" movement.

Father Gerard Jean-Juste, Roman Catholic Priest for Saint Claire Catholic Church in Port Au Prince Haiti was arrested, Thursday, July 21, 2005 and charged with participating in the murder of journalist, Jacques Roche. This is the second arrest for Father Gerard Jean-Juste who spent 48 days in jail after he was arrested October 18, 2005 while feeding children in his church, and charged with disturbing the peace. He was freed through pressure from the poor people in his parish, throughout Haiti and international support from Solidarity organizations throughout the world, support from the Black Congressional Caucus, Trans Africa, and several American elected officials.

Father Jean-Juste remains vigilant and unbending in asking for the return of the Elected President of Haiti, Jean-Bertrand Aristide, a return to constitutional order, the freedom of all the political prisoners including Yvon Neptune (Prime Minister of Haiti) and Annette August (folk singer) he has consistently demanded an end to the summary executions and the arbitrary detentions of the Haitian poor, the vast majority represented by the Family Lavalas Party. Father Jean-Juste is considered a Priest of the Poor, because of the feeding programs and education he provides to those who cannot afford them, he has been compared to Martin Luther King for his fiery speeches and the leader of the non violent resistance movement in Haiti. Father Gerard Jean-Juste just recently released from a previous detainment, proclaimed, "These latest official and unofficial threats will not stop us, the Haitian people, from fighting for our human rights and the return of our democracy including the return of our President Aristide and the release of the political prisoners in Haiti. They will not intimidate us, they will not silence us. We will continue our struggle for democracy in our country Haiti."

Bill Quigley, Father Jean-Juste's attorney in Haiti has just informed The South Florida Haiti Solidarity Committee that Father Jean-Juste is under arrest and is charged with "participation in the murder of Jacques Roche", the reporter kidnapped for ransom on July 10 and murdered on July 15 after a $250,000 ransom was not paid. Father Jean-Juste was in Miami on July 15. A second charge will probably be "failure to return state property". According to the Haitian police Father Jean-Juste was given guns for security by the Aristide government that has never been returned to the government.

The Haiti Solidarity Committee and VeYe-Yo stand with the Haitian Community in their moment of despair, but with the belief that justice will prevail for Father Gerard Jean-Juste and once again and he will be freed. We continue our support for the programs he provides for the poor citizens of Cite Soleil and Belaire, and we continue our support for his Non violent resistance movement.

Free Father Jean-Juste




Photos by Danny Hammontree

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Comments {4}

Chambersworth Montgomery Withersby III

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from: c_m_withersby
date: 20050724 07:51 pm (UTC)
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I love your work and I thought I'd add you as a friend. Cool?

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Danny Hammontree

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from: dannyhammontree
date: 20050724 08:12 pm (UTC)
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very cool... thank you ;)

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Belimah

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from: belimah
date: 20050725 08:19 pm (UTC)
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I keep periodically checking your journal to look at your work. Mind if I friend you?

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Danny Hammontree

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from: dannyhammontree
date: 20050725 08:20 pm (UTC)
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thank you :) friend me... i'll friend you back :)

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