[News] Haiti - Father Jean Juste beaten, taken to police station

News at freedomarchives.org News at freedomarchives.org
Thu Jul 21 18:37:05 EDT 2005

Emergency Alert: Father Jean Juste beaten by group 184 people at church, 
feels he is under arrest, is being questioned since this morning at police 
station and is NOT FREE to go.

This morning, Father Gerald Jean-Juste went to St. Pierre Church in 
Petionville. He was part of group of priests and monsegneurs who where 
participating in the funeral service of well-known journalist and kidnap 
victim Jacques Roches. (For info on Jacque Roches, see "Death Regimes tries 
for 'a second December 5th, 2004' attempting to leverage the sad death of 
Jacques Roche to criminalize Lavalas and spread more untruths" at:
http://www.margueritelaurent.com/pressclips/rocheused.html )

While walking in with the priest delegation, members of group 184, in the 
church started chanting "Jean Juste must go to jail, Jean Juste must go to 
jail." They also started a raucous saying that they didn't want Jean-Juste 
to take part along with the other priests he was with who would conduct the 
funeral service.

HLLN doesn't have all the specific details, but this is what a friend who 
just now spoke to Jean-Juste, who is currently at the police station said 
to:  "A group of 184 coup D’etat people, walked up to Father Jean Juste and 
started beating him, right in the church. They hit him in the head, eye, 
all over. Morally he's very strong. Because yesterday when he left the 
Justice Palace, we know he spoke to the media. He let them know that the 
kidnappings in Haiti started with the kidnapping of President Aristide and 
must stop with the return of President Aristide."

"They don't like his speech to the media yesterday. That's why they beat 
him up today."

Even though our phone connection, started to mysteriously beep, before I 
lost contact, HLLN's source who had just spoken directly to Father Jean 
Juste less than fifteen minutes before, continued "when the atmosphere got 
tense, MINUSTHA and the National Police walked over to talk to Jean Juste. 
I think they asked him to leave. Then at that moment there was an 
aggression. Just as MINUSTHA (UN soldiers) and the Haitian police, who were 
in St. Pierre's church, where talking to Jean Juste, that's when   group 
184 started to beat him senseless. It seems like the police took him from 
the church, saying they were taking him out for his own safety. but Father 
Jean-Juste now believes he was put under arrest."

"They beat him badly, the GNB. But, right now Father Jean Juste is still at 
the police station. He's been there since 9:30 or 9:45 this morning. It's 
now past 5 o'clock. So, he now believes he is under arrest. What is 
strange, they took him police station that is one block from St. Pierre, a 
Catholic church in Petionville. But he is still inside. They won't let him 
leave. So it appears

He's been victimized, twice. First by getting beaten right in front of 
MINUSTHA soldiers and the National Police and now they won't let him go 
home. He is still inside the police Station."

After getting this report, I called Father Jean Juste cell phone directly. 
The first time, it was busy. The time was 5:20pm.

I want to get this out fast, but need collaboration. I waited and few 
minutes and called again. This time, just now at 5:32pm, Father Jean 
Juste's phone was answered by Attorney Bill Quigley.

Bill couldn't stay on the phone for long. Said the police and officials 
were just calling them back into a room for further questioning.  But he 
said, in sum, let the solidarity network and international community know 
that we need their help. We need the UN to commit to protecting Father 
Jean-Juste. I asked Bill Quigley some quick questions about what happened 
and he basically said this "they shoved him, spit on him, cursed him, tried 
to hurt him. MINUSTHA was trying to protect him. But the crowd overcame the 
protection. A women who tried to help was shoved away..... They called him 
"dirty rat." He was assaulted while in full priest clothing."

I asked Bill about Jean Juste condition and whether he was beaten by the 
crowd. Bill said that he doesn’t know whether father Jean Juste needs 
medical help. If I understand correctly,  on the surface père Jean Juste 
does not need immediate medical care. He was just severely shoved, spit at, 
cursed, et al.  But according to our first source who spoke to Jean Juste, 
the father feels he is under arrest.

Bill Quigley confirmed “He is not free to go.”

I am sure attorney Quigley, who was with father Jean Juste this morning at 
the church and all day at the police station will provide us with more 
information soon.

Write, fax, call UN authorities, who just recently expanded (UN Security 
Council Res. 1698) their authority in Haiti and now supervise and control 
the Haitian police, ask the UN to stop the officially sanctioned 
harassement of father Jean Juste and that he be released from the police 
custody immediately. (MINUSTHA and other contact info is on our 

Thank you.

Marguerite Laurent
July 21, 2005 5:39pm
HLLN Statement - http://www.margueritelaurent.com/pressclips/openletter.html
July 21, 2005

Open Letter Demanding a Stop to UN slaughter
of Haitian civilians in Site soleil, Haiti

Demand a Stop to the killings in Cite Soleil
Please send appeals immediately
See Urgent Action Alert

UN Secretary General Kofi Annan
President George W. Bush
President of the UN, Jan Eliasson
General Pereira, MINUSTAH
Toussaint Cong-Doudou, MINUSTAH
Juan Gabriel Valdes, MINUSTHA
Mahamane Cisse-Guoro, UN Human Rights office, Haiti
David Beer, Commissioner of CIVPOL
Ambassador Claude Boucher, Canada
M. Yves GAUDEUL, Ambassador of France in Haiti

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