Government lifts suspension of flights to and from Haiti
Santo Domingo.- On Monday, the Dominican government, acting through the Civil Aviation Board, made an important decision to resume passenger and cargo air operations between the Dominican Republic and Haiti. This decision followed an extraordinary session held the same day and takes immediate effect. President Luis Abinader confirmed this measure during an interview with LA Semanal con la Prensa.
This decision is outlined in a resolution known as JAC resolution 234-2023, signed by its president, José Ernesto Marte Piantini. The primary purpose of this extraordinary session was to review the measure provided by Resolution 191-2023, dated September 14, 2023. This earlier resolution, issued by the Civil Aviation Board, pertained to passenger and cargo air operations involving the Republic of Haiti.
According to the document, the JAC received specific instructions from the President and the National Security Council of the Dominican Republic. This was a response to the need for more flexibility in the measures imposed back in September.
This decision is seen as a significant step in the process of normalizing relations between the two countries, particularly in light of the ongoing crisis surrounding the construction of a canal in the Masacre River. Furthermore, the JAC has ordered that this communication be sent to all institutions connected to the Dominican airport system. This includes the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, the Ministry of Defense, the Air Force of the Dominican Republic, the Ministry of Tourism, the General Directorate of Customs, the General Directorate of Immigration, the Dominican Institute of Civil Aviation, and the Specialized Corps of Airport Security and Civil Aviation Security.
This communication has also been extended to the Airport Department, the Association of Airlines of the Dominican Republic, the Intelligence Directorate of the General Staff, as well as other entities responsible for cybersecurity and Communications Control, among others.
In regard to the commission from the Organization of American States (OAS) tasked with mediating the dispute over the diversion of the Masacre River, President Abinader announced that if the mission did not commence on Monday, it would proceed during the course of this week in Port-au-Prince, Haiti. The OAS delegation had previously visited Santo Domingo on October 17, where they held meetings with Foreign Minister Roberto Álvarez and other officials. During these meetings, the Dominican Republic’s position concerning the canal on the Masacre River was explained. Subsequently, it was reported that Haiti did not receive the commission because it had first visited the Dominican Republic and faced authorization issues related to flights originating from Santo Domingo.
As a result, the OAS representation returned to Washington. After their planned visit to Haiti, the delegation will compile a report with the aim of finding a mutually agreeable solution to the ongoing dilemma between the two nations.
President Abinader also reaffirmed the government’s stance regarding Haiti’s request to reopen its side of the border for bi-national trade. He emphasized that the authorities would not rescind the registration of biometric data for Haitian citizens. Expressing regret, he addressed political sectors demanding the government’s withdrawal of biometric registration for Haitians, underscoring that this registration is vital for national and citizen security. President Abinader stressed that political matters should not escalate to such a level, addressing this issue at the National Palace.