Wednesday 22 March 2023

Costa Rica, Panama and Dominican Republic seek a solution for Haiti

Carlos Alvarado, Luis Abinader and Laurentino Cortizo instructed their foreign ministers to seek "concrete, comprehensive and sustainable solutions" to "face the alarming situation in Haiti."

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22 March 2023 - At The Banks - BCCR

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QCOSTARICA – Costa Rica President Carlos Alvarado, Luis Abinader Corona of the Dominican Republic, and Panama’s President Laurentino Cortizo, have instructed their foreign ministers to find sustainable solutions to the Haiti crisis, said the Dominican Republic’s Foreign Minister Roberto Alvarez on Wednesday.

In the photo: the Presidents of Costa Rica, Carlos Alvarado (right), Panama’s Laurentino Cortizo (middle) and Luis Abinader Corona of the Dominican Republic (left). In the far left is Giannina Dinarte, Costa Rica’s minister of the Presidency.

Alvarado, Corona and Cortizo met in New York on the sidelines of the high-level week of the UN General Assembly, Alvarez told reporters at UN Headquarters.

Following the meeting, the three heads of state signed a communique, which was read to reporters by Alvarez.

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They expressed their deep concern over the crisis in Haiti and its growing impact on the region, particularly the serious migratory consequences, according to the communique.

“Based on our mutual commitment to the rule of law, democratic institutions and the respect and protection of human rights, we are making progress in creating this flexible and informal space for dialogue in order to promote joint initiatives that result in prosperity, sustainable development and the reactivation of our economies,” indicates the document with which the alliance was created.

In this context, the presidents instructed their foreign ministers to – in alliance with the United Nations, the United States, the European Union and friendly countries – “immediately structure concrete, comprehensive and sustainable solutions, within a framework of respect for the dignity and human rights, in order to confront the alarming situation in Haiti ”.

In this trilateral meeting, President Alvarado was accompanied by Foreign Minister Rodolfo Solano.

Also, the Costa Rican president held a meeting with Sergio Díaz, president of the Banco de Desarrollo de América Latina (CAF) – Development Bank of Latin America -, who proposed increasing the presence of this entity in our country, in addition to working together to protect marine areas.

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In recent years, the Central American region, especially Costa Rica and Panama, has attended waves of thousands of migrants, most of them Haitians, seeking to reach the United States.

Currently, thousands are in the border communities of Colombia and Panama, and thousands more have already crossed Central America and are on the border between Mexico and the United States.

Read more: U.S.-bound migrants fill Colombia town as COVID-19 border closures lifted

During their journey, these people risk their lives in dangerous jungle areas such as the Darien, through which they enter Panama, and are prone to violence, robbery and traffickers demanding the payment of thousands of dollars.

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This week the authorities of Costa Rica and Panama carried out a joint operation and

arrested 41 suspected of being part of an organized crime gang that smuggled migrants through these countries.

Read more: Group charged migrants US$22K to get them to the United States.

The sudden influx of migrants into the United States from Haiti, which is considered the poorest country in the Western Hemisphere and most recently ravaged by a devastating earthquake and the assassination of its president, prompted the current U.S. government to initiate a mass deportation process.

The repatriation of Haitians has put the Haitian migration system on the edge.

The New York Times quoted Jean Negot Bonheur Delva, the head of Haiti’s national migration office, as saying that his country “is not really able to receive these deportees,” whom he said “are very agitated” and “don’t accept the forced return.”


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