Honorable CARICOM leaders,
We took note of the important White House briefing on the Ninth Summit of the Americas meeting with leaders of the Caribbean Community CARICOM and the Dominican Republic of June 10, 2022, statement on challenges stemming from COVID-19, natural disasters due to climate change and with closing statement, “That the United States and CARICOM reaffirm our commitment to promoting and defending democracy and the rule of law, as enshrined in the Inter-American Democratic Charter.”
With this letter directed to the CARICOM leaders and the American president Mr. Biden and Vice-President Mrs. Harris we would like to add that Bonaire, as a small Caribbean island, we were the victim of forced illegal annexation and elimination of our democracy and reversed to an era of non-democracy when the Netherlands Antilles was dissolved on October 10, 2010.
One major critical issue at this summit was the theme of “democracy” where Cuba and Venezuela (which Bonaire is 50 miles off the coast of Venezuela) democracy were the center point of this discussion. We would like to add our situation which was imposed in a state of non-democracy – where our people are being ruled in a status against their wishes which they democratically and legally rejected after the annexation on October 10, 2010, and were embedded under unequal rights in the Dutch Constitution in October 2017.
We urge the CARICOM to discuss our island Bonaire as an individual case as it is of high urgency as it led to many violations of self-determination, democratic and human rights, eradication of the Bonaire natives, declared by the United Nations and International Community as crime against humanity:
Open borders for European Dutch that doubled the population in a decade, reducing the native Bonerians to less than 40% minority on their own island.
Reversing education policies and laws, denying our children human rights to education in own native language, Papiamento.
Replacing/changing our demography, lifting all small-market protections to open market, open pricing, wiping out all our local businesses replacing them with Dutch Europeans and others
Demoting and replacing all our local head of departments with Dutch immigrants taking over all local institutions and leadership positions
Raising and imposing taxes at level of Holland in Europe while our income is less than half of the income in Holland, Europe – land and property taxes increased by over 800% destitute locals from their inherited lands and food resources.
Creating and maintaining social inequality, pushing over 60% of the population under half of the poverty line.
We Bonerians, who are on an inevitable path to disappear as Caribbean people, we have no choice left but to reach out for support and solidarity to you as CARICOM leaders at this critical moment in our history as the summit raised to global attention especially on the theme of democracy. This is very special as “our nations are bonded together by shared values, culture, history, and family ties” as you reaffirmed your commitment to promoting and defending democracy and the rule of law. Also, that you will work in partnership with civil society and the private sector to ensure that democracy delivers for all our people and to build safe, inclusive, prosperous, equitable, and climate resilient societies.
To substantiate all above-mentioned violations and denial of our self-determination, democratic, social, political, cultural human rights we commissioned and finalized recently an independent United Nations-recognized report: “Assessment of self-governance sufficiency in conformity with internationally recognized standards: Country Bonaire” and video-report
https://youtu.be/Zj3zKvE5hHw that we would like to disseminate to your CARICOM leaders.
Thank you for taking time to read our note. We know it is a lot of information, so please don’t hesitate to reach out if you have any questions.
James Finies – President Nos Ke Boneiru Bek
Davika Bissessar – President Bonaire Human Rights