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Humanitarian crisis in the Dominican Republic needs intervention from President Obama

Roger Caldwell

Roger Caldwell

Humanitarian crisis in the Dominican Republic needs intervention from President Obama

By Roger Caldwell

There are hundreds of thousands of Haitian migrants in the Dominican Republican that face the threat of deportation. Many of these people and families have lived in the Dominican Republic for generations, and they are essentially Dominicans. There are contradictory statements from the Dominican leaders, but this new plan/law could impact over 500,000 people living in the Dominican Republic.

If the political leaders in the Dominican Republic follow through with their deportation plans, hundreds of thousands Haitian Dominicans will be made stateless, without homes, passports, and no civil rights. According to the ruling, Dominicans born after 1929 to parents who are not of Dominican ancestry are to have their citizenship revoked.

Many Americans and people around the world are not aware that there are two countries, Haiti and the Dominican Republic, that habitat the same island. The majority of the people in the Dominican Republic are mulattos (brown), and the Haitians are dark skinned (Black). For over 100 years, there has been an intense hatred for each other, and Haitians in the Dominican Republic are treated as second class citizens.

In the Dominican Republic, Haitian Dominicans are denied job opportunities, public education, bank accounts, health care, and protection under the law. They can be picked up and arrested by the police for any reason, and be beaten and jailed without a court trial. In February, a young man was lynched in a public park in Santiago, and the authorities and police ruled out racism.

On June 18, 2015, Army General, Ruben Paulino was suppose to start the expulsion and deportation of people who don’t have proof of application. On the other hand, Andres Navarro, the foreign minister, says they will wait until August to start deportation.

This is the largest horrific humanitarian crisis in the Western hemisphere, and very few reporters in the media are engaged in the story. The United States has denounced the Dominican government for this plan, and pointed out that it is a gross violation of human rights. But after this statement, everyone is waiting to see if President Obama will follow up with a strong condemnation from the United Nations and the United States.

At this point, everything is quiet around the world with human rights groups, except in Little Haiti in Miami. A group of about 50 demonstrators in Miami held a rally, and called upon the United States to intervene in the deportation plan in the Dominican Republic.

Humanitarian crisis in the Dominican Republic needs intervention from President Obama “We are asking President Obama and the United States government to intervene and take sanctions against the Dominican Republic. We are asking the Dominican Republic to stop deportations to Haiti right now. We are asking the U.N. to join and take sanctions. And we ask, if there are any possible deportations for people who are not supposed to be in the Dominican Republic, that they are done humanely” says Marleine Bastien, executive director of Haitian Women of Miami.

The fundamental reason for this deportation plan is “ethnic cleansing” or white supremacy. When a group of people are delegated to a position of second class citizenship in a country because of the color of their skin, that is racism.

Black people in America and around the world have a responsibility to speak out against injustices at their backdoor. It is unfair to deport people who have lived in a country for generations because of the color of their skin.

If President Obama allows this deportation plan to continue, the Dominican Haitians have nowhere to go. They will end up in refugee camps with hundreds of thousands of people. There will be disease epidemics, and war rapes, with a spike in HIV. There will be more orphaned children and widows with more horrendous consequences.


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    Carma Lynn Henry Westside Gazette Newspaper 545 N.W. 7th Terrace, Fort Lauderdale, Florida 33311 Office: (954) 525-1489 Fax: (954) 525-1861

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