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Gonaives, Haiti.JPG
DepartmentArtibonite Department
 • MayorStephen Moise
6 m (20 ft)
 • City206,426
 • Metro
Time zoneUTC-5 (Eastern)
 • Summer (DST)UTC-4 (Eastern)

Gonaïves (Gonayiv in Kréyòl) is a city in northern Haiti, the capital of the Artibonite Department. It has a population of about 104,825 people (2003 census). The city's name derives from the original Amerindian name of Gonaibo. It is also known as Haïti's "independence city". The Bay of Gonaïves is named after the town.


The Battle of Ravine-à-Couleuvres

In 1802 an important battle of the Haitian Revolution, the Battle of Ravine-à-Couleuvres was fought near Gonaïves.

Haitian independence

Gonaïves is also known as Haiti's City of Independence because it was there that Jean-Jacques Dessalines declared Haiti, the former Saint-Domingue, independent from France on January 1, 1804 by reading the Act of Independence, drafted by Boisrond Tonnerre, on the Place d'Armes of the town.

Marie-Claire Heureuse Félicité, the wife of Jean-Jacques Dessalines, died here in August 1858.

Recent history

In the early 2000s, Gonaïves was the scene of substantial rioting and violence primarily motivated by opposition to President Jean-Bertrand Aristide, and on February 5, 2004, a group calling itself the Revolutionary Artibonite Resistance Front seized control of the city, starting the 2004 Haïtian rebellion. But in recent years the city has seen a complete return to calmness. The town square has been fortified by, mostly Argentine, UN forces.

In September 2004, Hurricane Jeanne caused major flooding and mudslides in the city. 3,006 people were confirmed dead in Haïti, and the death toll in Gonaïves was believed to have topped 2,000. Every building in the city was damaged by the storm and 250,000 people were left homeless.

Four years later, the city was again devastated by another storm, Hurricane Hanna, which killed 529 people, mostly in flooded sections of Gonaïves, where the destruction was described as "catastrophic" and 495 bodies were discovered as late as September 5.[2][3] Haitian authorities said the tally could grow once officials are able to make their way through Gonaïves. "The assessment is only partial, because it is impossible to enter the city for the moment", Gonaïves Mayor Stephen Moise said. At least 48,000 people from the Gonaïves areas were forced into shelters. Some people slept on the roofs of their houses to protect them from possible looters. The catastrophe left many homeless begging for food and clothes. Others left for the mountains hoping to wait out the next storms on the horizon.[4]


  • Tele Radio new star fm 99.9 Chaine 13
  • Radio Continentale 99.5 FM
  • Radio Sun 91.3 FM
  • Radio Independence 101.5 FM stations affiliées: radio Metropole 100.1 Lavwadlamerik
  • Radio Mega Max 95.9 FM
  • Radio Kiss FM 96.9 site by pkj web 617 237 5880
  • Radio Provinciale 95.3 FM
  • Radio Pyramide FM
  • Radio Trans-Artibonite
  • Radio Gonaïves 97.7 FM
  • Radio Trans Atlantique 102.5 FM
  • Radio explosion
  • Radio Etincelle
  • Radio Nouvelle Vision Chrétienne
  • Radio Intrepide 97.3 FM
  • Radio Tambou FM
  • Radio Express FM
  • Radio Classic Inter FM
  • Radio 4VEG FM
  • Radio Espace FM
  • Radio KL 2000 FM
  • Radio Super Vision FM
  • Radio Megamax FM
  • Radio Main Dans La Main FM
  • Radio Clarté 103.9 FM
  • Radio Vision 2000 98.1 FM
  • Radio Tele 2004 (101.1FM)


  1. Institut Haïtien de Statistique et d'Informatique (IHSI)
  2. "Hurricane Ike targets Gulf, Hanna's toll rises". Reuters. 2008. Retrieved 2008-09-06.
  3. "Haiti Impact". Hurricane Hanna Info. 2008. Retrieved 2008-09-04.
  4. Charles, Jacqueline (2008). "Horrible scene in Haiti after Hanna". Miami Herald. Retrieved 2008-09-05.[dead link]

External links

Coordinates: 19°27′N 72°41′W / 19.450°N 72.683°W / 19.450; -72.683

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