There has been an upsurge in the number of middle and upper class Haitians flocking to Dominican consulates to apply for visas to eventually settle in the neighboring Caribbean nation, Dominican today reported.
The development was confirmed to the newspaper by a Dominican diplomatic source in the Haitian city of Cap Haitien.
The increase in the number of visa applications is believed to stem from the current insecurity and economic difficulties in Haiti. For about half a century, the Caribbean nation has struggled to overcome problems of poverty and inequality. And to make matters worse, the country has also been ravaged by multiple deadly earthquakes.
The situation has worsened even more recently, as there has been a very significant increase in gang activity. Various gangs have taken control of neighborhoods in the capital Port-au-Prince, Cap-Haitien and other areas.
George Bazin, a Haitian national currently in the Dominican Republic, told the media outlet that he had shut down his business and left his home country to escape insecurity. “They gave it to us for six months and we’ve been here for two and a half months now; we love this country very much and we don’t want to go back, ”said Bazin.
While in Haiti, Bazin said that although they were not kidnapped, a gang looted a chocolate factory that he and his wife ran. “Why live in Haiti, if there is no security for anyone or anything, and these kidnappings scare people,” Bazin said, adding that he hopes to enter the drug industry. chocolate in the Dominican Republic.
A report released last month by the United Nations Integrated Office in Haiti said the Caribbean nation’s national police received at least 328 kidnapping reports between January and August, New York Post reported. 234 cases of kidnappings were reported in 2020.
Another Haitian nurse who graduated from the Technological University of Santiago in the Dominican Republic (UTESA) also said she decided to move to the neighboring country with her family after her mother was nearly kidnapped. The nurse, Dianny Bisoneaux, had first returned to Cap Haitien where she worked in a public hospital.
Jenfrey Dubreiul, a Haitian activist, said Dominican today the current situation in the country is “regrettable”. “They even kidnap you to take a bicycle; the vehicles are forcibly taken from the people and they then have to buy them at the price indicated by the gang members, ”he said. “Haiti is unlivable at the moment, others will continue to arrive in this country, be prepared, it will be the case. “
A report by the National Commission for Disarmament, Dismantling and Reintegration indicated that there are currently more than 76 gangs in Haiti and more than 500,000 illegal weapons in the country.