The International Association of Democratic Lawyers (IADL) thanks the Independent Expert on the situation of human rights in Haiti, Mr. Gustavo Gallón, for his important work. In particular, we applaud the Independent Expert’s continued attention to the issue of cholera in Haiti, and the need for the UN to honor cholera victims’ right to an effective remedy.

IADL welcomes the Secretary-General’s recent apology to the Haitian people for the UN’s role in bringing cholera to Haiti. We support the launch of a New UN Approach to Cholera, which, if fully implemented, may finally bring an end to cholera deaths and provide victims with long-over due redress.

We note with deep concern, however, that today only 2% of the plan has been funded. We call on all Member States to honor the collective responsibility of the UN to right this wrong in Haiti.

We urge the Human Rights Council to provide leadership and technical expertise to ensure that the material assistance package promised by the Secretary-General is developed and implemented consistently with cholera victims’ right to an effective remedy, including the right to compensation. We are concerned that to date, the UN has not consulted with victims about the New Approach, despite pledging to “place victims at the centre.” We are also concerned that the UN seems to favor community projects without having spoken to victims about their needs.

Excellencies, this is a historic opportunity for the UN to affirm the rights and dignity of victims of UN harms, safeguard the UN’s moral credibility as a rights-respecting organization, and provide life-changing redress to thousands of Haiti’s most vulnerable people. It would be a travesty of justice if, after having come this far, the UN failed to deliver.

March 21st, 2017

Download PDF: IADL oral intervention ID with IE on Haiti