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Two opportunities to meet Guy Delva, Haitian journalist and media rights activis

Haiti Support Group | 02.03.2005 14:25 | Indymedia | Repression | London

Last month, a car tailed Guy Delva as he drove home through the Haitian capital, Port-au-Prince. He turned left, the car turned left. He drove up a one-way street the 'wrong way' - the car followed. Panicking, he drove into a crowded gas station forecourt - the car drove away. Lucky this time!

Guy Delva is head of the Haitian Journalists' Association, and an experienced journalist - he is currently the country correspondent for the Reuters news agency. In the year 2000, Guy and some colleagues responded to a growing tendency for journalists in Haiti to become targets in a violent political arena by reviving the defunct Association des Journalistes Haitiens (AJH) in order to organise and defend themselves.

The AJH - moribund after being taken over by supporters of the 1991-94 military regime - was reconstituted following the murder of journalist, Jean Dominique, in 2000. Since January 2001, with Guy at its head, the AJH has played a prominent role in highlighting human rights abuses against journalists, and financing legal actions against those responsible.

While leading the civil society campaign to find justice for Jean Dominique, Guy Delva often clashed with supporters of the Lavalas Family Party. The party's Port-au-Prince neighbourhood organiser, Rene Civil, even threatened Guy's life, calling him a "traitor" when, in early 2002, he appeared at a press conference with the head of the French Reporters without Borders organisation.

Sadly, the change of regime in February/March 2004 has done nothing to improve matters, and in recent months, Guy has been receiving death threats believed to be issued by those who do not want the point of view of certain political parties or sectors of society to be reflected in media reports.

In January 2005, the journalist, Abdias Jean, was shot dead by police during a police operation in a Port-au-Prince slum - it seems Jean had seen police commit extra-judicial executions and wanted to eliminate all witnesses....In this context, media rights organisations were alarmed when a few days later interim Prime Minister Latortue denounced Guy Delva for spreading 'disinformation'.

To meet this determined activist who believes in reporting the truth as he sees it and not as vested interests want it, please make a note of the following events:

1) Sunday 6th March, 4pm - Screening of two documentary films about Haiti at the ICA cinema, followed by a Q&A with director, Juliana Ruhfus, and Guy Delva. The award-winning documentary, “When I am Misery I sing”, covers the ten weeks surrounding President Aristide’s February 29, 2004, departure, and looks at the role the music played in the uprising. It follows partisan musicians on both sides of the political divide, combining actuality footage of the performers in action with images of the unfolding rebellion, material shot by the rebels themselves – and of course lots of music passing the message

The ICA, The Mall (just off Trafalgar Square - by tube: Charing Cross or Piccadilly Circus) Tickets costing £6.50 / £4.50 can be booked at: 0207 930 3647 or online at

NOTE: there are only 50 seats in the ICA cinema - book to avoid disappointment

2) Monday, 7th March, 6.45pm - Haiti Support Group meeting with Guy Delva at the upstairs meeting room at The Lucas Arms, 245A Gray's Inn Road, London WC1 (nearest tube: Kings Cross). This meeting is free, but please email to let us know that you are coming.

Guy Delva is in London as a guest of the Haiti Support Group.


See the Haiti Support Group web site:

Solidarity with the Haitian people's struggle for justice, participatory democracy and equitable development, since 1992.

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