SAR’s Academic Freedom Monitoring Project investigates and reports attacks on higher education with the aim of raising awareness, generating advocacy, and increasing protection for scholars, students, and academic communities. Learn more.

Date of Incident: October 05, 2020

Attack Types: Killings, Violence, Disappearances

Institution(s):École Normale Supérieure

Region & Country:Americas | Haiti

New or Ongoing:New Incident

On October 5, 2020, during continued protests over the killing of a student protester three days earlier on the campus of École Normale Supérieure (see report), a second individual was killed, reportedly by police.

Students gathered in Port-Au-Prince to demonstrate against the killing of Grégory Saint-Hilaire, student at École Normale Supérieure, who was shot during a similar protest in front of campus three days earlier. During the October 5 protests, students reportedly burned cars, blocked roads, and clashed with police. One individual was shot in the head and killed. Students alleged the police were to blame for the killing, and authorities opened an investigation.

Scholars at Risk is concerned about violence and the killing of a protester during a student protest. While state authorities have a right to ensure public order, they are obligated to ensure the security of higher education communities, and to refrain from violent or disproportionate actions in response to protest activity. Likewise, while students and civil society have a right to freedom of expression and  assembly, they have an obligation to exercise those rights peacefully and responsibly.  Violence in the course of student protests threatens academic freedom, institutional autonomy, and democratic society in general.