Local June 21, 2013 | 11:09 am

Tense border as Haiti guards beat back merchants headed to Dominican side

Dajabon, Dominican Republic.- Tension surged Friday in the shuttered border gate on the Masacre River bridge, where Haitian guards wielding batons halted merchants from their country trying to reach Dominican Republic’s binational market.

While at the other side in Ouanaminthe Haitians are stripped of even some small amounts of purchased goods as they cross the river which divides the two nations that share Hispaniola. Some arrests and harassment by police against their compatriots have also been reported.

Some groups have torched tires at Ouanaminthe, chanting that the “people have the right to eat,” while Dajabón merchants wait for their Haiti counterparts to cross the border.

The protest takes place despite a visit by a commission of Dajabón merchants to the Haitian side Thursday to convince the Haitians to take part in the market held Fridays and Mondays.

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