Local June 18, 2013 | 7:35 am

Dominican, Haiti governments square off on poultry ban

Santo Domingo.- The Dominican government Monday night called Haiti’s proposal to continue banning Dominican poultry products and allow only meats, "totally unacceptable," after a four hour meeting of officials from both countries failed to solve the one-week standoff.

After the meeting, Foreign minister Carlos Morales said president Danilo Medina was told "in a very clear, very transparent and quite frankly, that they didn’t see much interest on the Haitian side."

A visibly annoyed Foreign Minister, who headed the Dominican delegation in the more than four-hour meeting with Haiti to discuss lifting Port-au-Prince’s ban on chickens and eggs, said the Haitian officials called him during the weekend, and confirmed they were "coming to resolve."

He said however that yesterday’s proposal was "totally unacceptable", because the Dominican government’s only priority is to lift the ban on poultry products, even it temporarily. "It was an abrupt decision by them, when relations were supposedly quite cordial, and we learnt it from the media, so we didn’t see much interest. We’re trying to find a solution."

When asked if the Haitian commission set a timeline to respond to the Dominican government, Morales said "they neither stated a term, nor do we believe in deadlines."

Prudent relationships

As to standoff’s effect on binational ties, Morales declined comment, but noted: "Well, let’s wait, in this we must have … listen… first of all in diplomacy we should speak little, one must be cautious, I think prudence is the best counselor now. "

The official spoke in the National Palace accompanied by Presidency chief of staff Gustavo Montalvo and Agriculture minister Luis Ramon Rodriguez.

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