Local January 20, 2011 | 7:46 am

U.S. Ambassador warns the Dominican Government on Haitian migrants

Santo Domingo.- Washington respects Dominican Republic’s migratory policy with Haitians as long as their human rights aren’t violated and when the established international norms are adhered to, said United States ambassador Raul H. Yzaguirre, who warned that they “are paying attention to the Dominican Government.”

Interviewed by newspaper El Caribe, the diplomat said the control of dealing and trafficking with people is of great importance for his government, for which he defends the U.S. State Department report on the problem, though recognized Dominican Republic’s right to think differently. “The important thing for us is the respect for human rights.”

As to the report, the diplomat said, it’s necessary to differentiate between dealing with and trafficking with people, because the first is about making human beings work sometimes against their will and in conditions of slavery, whereas the second relates to breaking the migratory laws when going from one country to another in condition of illegality. “We are paying attention to the Dominican Government and expect that we are going to solve that problem.”

“I’m more optimistic on the dealing with people because the traffic is something that depends more on individuals than governments,” Yzaguirre said, while recognizing the difficulties Dominican Republic faces by having a border with a nation as poor as Haiti, whose citizens struggle to cross into its territory.

The United States acknowledges that Dominican Republic, as sovereign nation, has a right to establish its migratory policy, “but for us the important thing is that human rights, which are universal, are respected.”


Yzaguirre praised president Leonel Fernandez for recognizing the gravity of corruption in Dominican Republic and for the efforts to curtail it. “It is a serious thing and the President has requested our aid and we have facilitated training. It is a very serious problem and we recognize it.”

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