[Public Papers of the Presidents of the United States: William J. Clinton (1993, Book II)] [October 29, 1993] [Pages 1863-1864] [From the U.S. Government Publishing Office www.gpo.gov]
Statement on the Situation in Haiti October 29, 1993 The military and police authorities in Haiti continue to defy the will of the Haitian people and the international community. Their persistent obstructionism has prevented democracy's return, an important United States interest. We have other interests involved as well. I am committed to ensure the safety of over 1,000 Americans living and working in Haiti. We must also give Haitians hope in their own land so they do not risk the perils of the sea to try to reach our shores. The continued violence and intimidation by the Haitian military and police authorities have made it impossible for President Aristide to return to Haiti tomorrow, as scheduled under the Governors Island Agreement of July 3. I have called President Aristide and Prime Minister Malval today to reaffirm America's commitment to finding a negotiated solution to this crisis. I welcome and applaud the invitation of U.N. Secretary-General Boutros-Ghali, announced by U.N./OAS Special Envoy Dante Caputo, to all parties to meet next week in Haiti to get the Governors Island process back on track. The Haitian military and police leaders must not delude themselves into thinking they have destroyed the Governors Island process. We remain firmly committed to that process and the consolidation of Haitian democracy. Next week's meeting offers the opportunity to resolve the outstanding issues between all sides. I urge all parties to act in good faith and with flexibility and with the interests of all Haitians at heart. President Aristide must be allowed to return home to the Haitian people who elected him by a landslide in 1991. President Aristide's address to the U.N. General Assembly October 28 reaffirmed his dedica- [[Page 1864]] tion to the well-being of all his people. His emphasis on dialog and reconciliation should provide confidence that the Haitian crisis can be solved peacefully by negotiation. I urge all parties to build on that spirit at next week's meeting. The sanctions and their enforcement are an unprecedented defense of democracy in the Americas. The U.N. and OAS sanctions and additional steps we have taken against individuals blocking a negotiated solution underscore the depth of our Nation's commitment to end this crisis. We will maintain sanctions and strictly enforce them by the U.S. Navy and Coast Guard and by ships of several allies. We will also consider the most effective ways to tighten the sanctions. As we work for the return of President Aristide, we will maintain our policy of direct return of migrants and continue to process political asylum applications within Haiti. Mindful of the impact of sanctions on Haiti's poor, we will also continue our humanitarian assistance to assist those in need. It feeds half a million Haitian children every day and provides health services to 2 million Haitians. We will closely monitor the provision of these services and seek to ensure an adequate supply of fuel for their delivery. The Haitian crisis challenges our country's principles and interests. We must maintain our commitment to work for its peaceful resolution. Let me say to the Haitian people: I am determined to help you restore the democracy you sacrificed so much to attain. And when it is restored, we in the international community will be by your side to help you create a future of hope.