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#960: Preval on deportations (fwd)


Expulsions Anger Haitian President

.c The Associated Press


PORT-AU-PRINCE, Haiti (AP) - President Rene Preval on Sunday condemned the 
expulsion of more than 2,000 illegal Haitian residents from the Dominican 
Republic over the past 10 days.

He accused the Dominican government of expelling the Haitians without 
allowing them fair hearings or allowing them to collect their belongings.

``We have already protested officially to the Dominican government,'' Preval 
said, before flying to Cuba to attend the Ibero-American Summit. He said he 
was demanding that deportations be carried out ``in conformity with 
international norms.''

The increased expulsions began Nov. 5, said Haitian National Migration Office 
director Carol Joseph, in an interview with The Associated Press.

Until then, the average weekly number of expulsions was about 200, he said. 
The Dominican military said it had sent reinforcements to the border to stop 
illegal crossings, but denied it had planned a sweep of Haitians residing 
illegally in the country.

Most of the Haitians had been recruited in December and January to work on 
Dominican sugar plantations. Accused of overstaying, they were rounded up in 
towns not on plantations.

Many are Haitians who do not have citizenship papers, but were born and 
raised in the Dominican Republic by illegal immigrants, Joseph said.

The expulsions follow a report issued by the Inter-American Human Rights 
Commission two weeks ago condemning the treatment of Haitians living in the 
Dominican Republic.

On Friday, more than 1,100 Haitians were expelled at Ouanaminthe, an official 
expulsion point on the northern border, Joseph said.

AP-NY-11-14-99 2032EST

 Copyright 1999 The Associated Press.  The information  contained in the AP 
news report may not be published,  broadcast, rewritten or otherwise 
distributed without  prior written authority of The Associated Press.