Hundreds of rights groups urge US to stop deporting Haitians fleeing gang war


(Reuters) – Nearly 500 immigration and human rights organizations signed a letter urging the U.S. government to halt deportations of Haitians and expand migration protections as devastating gang conflict escalates on the Caribbean island nation.

The Haitian Bridge Alliance, a San Diego-based nonprofit, published a letter on Wednesday with 481 migration, human rights, religious and civil rights groups calling on the U.S. administration to extend Temporary Protected Status (TPS) for Haitians Went. Deportations and forced returns, releasing detained migrants, and expanding parole programs for refugees.

Countries including the United States, Canada and France are evacuating their citizens as well as staff from the Haiti operations of international organizations such as the United Nations, the European Union, the World Bank and the International Monetary Fund.

Meanwhile, despite UN criticism, neighboring countries have stepped up border security and sent back Haitians fleeing the violence. The US and Canada have also deployed troops to protect their embassies.

“If the United States cannot keep its personnel safe in Haiti, the Haitian government is unlikely to keep Haitian citizens safe,” the letter said. The letter states that migration and forced displacement should not be compounded by a lack of “reparatory justice for slavery, colonialism”. and neo-colonial imperialism.”

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Haiti’s political situation has been in stalemate for more than two weeks, with politicians unable to come together to install a transition council president and interim prime minister, while a coalition of heavily armed gangs storm the capital Port-au-Prince. continue to fight over parts of. No control yet.

The council – with progress hampered by factional disagreements and threats – was initially expected to make its decision within 48 hours of Prime Minister Ariel Henry announcing his resignation on March 11. On Wednesday, it issued a statement saying it was finalizing a document on its modalities. ,

The United Nations estimates that more than 360,000 Haitians have been internally displaced and thousands have died in the conflict, while constantly shifting battle lines have cut off access to health care, food and regular income.

While the capital’s airport is closed, Haiti’s Sunrise Airways restarted flights to Miami from the relatively quiet northern city of Cap-Haitien on Monday after domestic and international flights were canceled due to the violence.

Gang leader Jimmy “Barbeque” Charizier called for the fight to continue in a video address on Wednesday. “Planes should not fly in the country. We need to keep marching,” he said.

(Reporting by Sarah Moreland and Harold Isaacs; Editing by Stephen Coates)

Copyright 2024 Thomson Reuters,


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