Defenseurs Plus denounces the violence against Haitian nationals in the Dominican Republic and calls on the authorities of this country to guarantee the protection of all individuals on its territory.
Defenseurs Plus, an organization committed to the defense of human rights and the protection of vulnerable individuals, including migrants, expresses deep concern over the recent acts of violence perpetrated against Haitian people in the Dominican Republic. Verbal and physical assaults, heinous murders, arbitrary detention, and sexual violence are just some of the acts targeting Haitian migrants in the Dominican Republic, carried out by ultranationalist and xenophobic groups. These groups take advantage of a climate of impunity, facilitated by the passivity or complicity of the Dominican government, stemming from the dispute that arose from the construction of the Massacre River canal last September. Despite calls for dialogue, the Dominican government has reinforced its position by completely closing the borders between the two countries, to the detriment of the populations on both sides of the island.
Defenseurs Plus strongly condemns these acts of violence, which go against the fundamental principles of dignity and respect for human rights. Every individual, regardless of nationality, has the right to security and physical integrity. The collective also deplores the confrontational and inappropriate behavior of President Luis Abinader and his government. Defenders Plus calls on the international community to take note of this inappropriate behavior, as it endangers the security of both the Haitian and Dominican populations.
Defenseurs Plus urgently calls on the authorities of the Dominican Republic to take immediate and effective measures to end these acts of violence and ensure the protection of all individuals within its territory, regardless of their nationality or status. It is imperative that the Dominican authorities conduct thorough investigations into reported incidents such as rape, family separations, atrocities committed against Haitian individuals, cases of murder, and the burning of houses belonging to people of Haitian descent. The identification of the perpetrators of these reprehensible acts is demanded, and that they be brought to justice in accordance with Dominican laws and international human rights obligations to which the Dominican state is committed.
Defenseurs Plus also urges the Haitian authorities to actively collaborate with their Dominican counterparts to guarantee the safety and protection of their citizens living in the Dominican Republic. It is important to activate an emergency service through the Haitian diplomatic missions in the Dominican Republic to assist fellow compatriots in need. Defenders Plus remains vigilant and committed to closely monitoring the situation and continuing to work for the defense of the rights of all individuals, without distinction. The international community, regional human rights organizations, and the media are invited to pay attention to the situation of Haitians in the Dominican Republic and to act for the protection of the fundamental rights of everyone.
Done in Port-au-Prince, October 9, 2023
Communication and advocacy Manager
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