Republic of Haiti


  • 28 Oct - 03 Nov, 2017
  • Mag The Weekly
  • Panorama

Two rival flags have been used alternatively as the national flag since Haiti became independent in 1804. The most recent change came in 1986 with the fall of the Duvalier regime, when the original flag of two bands of blue over red, was readopted. Said to have been modelled on the French tricolour, it was used from around 1804, and its colours have subsequently come to be interpreted as representing the country’s two communities, the blacks (blue) and the mulattoes panel in the centre: a palm tree surrounded by weapons, with the motto L’union fait la force (Unity gives strength). The red cap of liberty, removed by the Duvalier regime, has been reinstated above the palm tree. The rival flag, of vertical black and red bands, had been used by some independence groups in the early 1800s and was readopted in 1964 by the now-discredited Duvalier government. Its colours have the same meaning as those on the blue and red flag.