The Coordination Europe-Haiti (COEH) has been informed of the restrictions on freedom of movement imposed by the Dominican authorities and the infringement of the reputation of Pierre Espérance, director of the National Network for the Defense of Human Rights (RNDDH). On April 14, 2023, the Dominican authorities published a list of Haitian personalities banned from entering the Dominican Republic because it is believed they pose a threat to the country. On this list the name of Pierre Espérance appears, alongside criminals and gang leaders, members of the private business sector and political figures, without any reason being given to justify such registration.
The COEH is concerned about the current developments in Haiti and the reaction of the Dominican authorities against a well-known human rights defender. We support Haitian human rights organizations in their demand to make public without delay the nature of the charges brought against Pierre Espérance and the RNDDH. By publishing their request, we want to show our solidarity with Pierre, the RNDDH and all Haitian human rights organizations.
It should be recalled that the Platform of Haitian Human Rights Organizations (POHDH) and the Ensemble Contre la Corruption (Joining Forces against Corruption, ECC), two platforms of which the RNDDH is a member, on April 20, 2023 published a statement in which they demand that the reasons on which the Dominican authorities relied on registering the name of Pierre Espérance on the list in question to be made public. Also, the Observatory for the Protection of Human Rights Defenders, a partnership of the International Federation for Human Rights (FIDH) and the World Organization Against Torture (OMCT), called on the Dominican authorities to remove Pierre Espérance from the list and to cease all harassment and retaliatory action against him.