Caricom gravely concerned over status of Haitians in Dominican Republic

-no-business-as-usual policy to remain

The Caribbean Community has noted with grave concern that the ruling by the Dominican Republic concerning the regularisation of Dominicans of Haitian descent expired on February 1 and government officials have indicated that it will not be extended.

“The process of regularisation of Dominicans of Haitian descent arbitrarily deprived of their nationality by the Dominican Republic Constitutional Court ruling on nationality of September 2013 expired on 1 February 2015, a communique issued at the close of the 26th Inter-Sessional Meeting of the Conference of Heads of Government of the Carib-bean Community noted. The statement also said that government officials have indicated that that date would not be extended despite the fact that only a very small number (6937) of the persons affected were able to apply in time, leaving a large number estimated to be over 100,000 vulnerable to expulsion.

“This distressing development needs to be placed in the context of the judgement of 22 October 2014 of the Inter-American Court of Human Rights which called for the nullifying of all the dispositions resulting from the ruling on nationality and for the reversal of the ruling itself,” Heads of Govern-ment said at the Confer-ence. “The Com-munity reiterates its condemnation of the Domini-can Republic Govern-ment’s repudiation of international law.”

The Caribbean Com-munity also condemned the resurgence of anti-Haitian sentiment in the Dominican Republic.  “This has led to the unnatural death of a Haitian migrant on 11 February 2015, the desecration of the Haitian flag and the expulsion of an increasing number of Haitians without verification of their immigration status,” the Heads said. In view of these troubling developments, Caricom maintains its posture of “no business as usual” with the Dominican Republic.

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