In a scathing resignation letter to Secretary of State Antony Blinken, US envoy to Haiti Daniel Foote denounces deportations “Inhuman” by the United States of thousands of Haitian migrants to their country plagued by the terror of armed gangs.
“I will not join in the inhuman and counterproductive decision of the United States to deport thousands of Haitian refugees and illegal immigrants to Haiti, a country where our officials are confined in secure complexes due to the danger that represent the armed gangs controlling daily life ”, asserts Mr. Foote in this letter dated Wednesday, September 22. “Our political approach in Haiti remains deeply flawed and my recommendations have been ignored and rejected, when they have not been changed”, also denounces Mr. Foote in his missive.
Daniel Foote was appointed on July 22 with the aim of “Facilitate peace and stability” and the holding of elections “Free and just” after the assassination of President Jovenel Moïse, killed in his private residence by an armed commando on July 7. His resignation is a new blow for Joe Biden, after his parliamentary difficulties and Afghanistan: his policy of mass expulsions of Haitian migrants to their country in the midst of security chaos is thus criticized – with harsh words – by his own envoy. .
The State Department responded by thanking “Special envoy Foote for his commitment to the country and to the people of Haiti”. Daniel Foote was seeking to expand his power of decision-making over US policy in Haiti, and the Biden administration decided it was not appropriate to give him so much leeway, a senior official also responded under the guise of ‘anonymity.
Fleeing from poverty and chaos
Tens of thousands of migrants, mostly Haitians, have piled up for several weeks in the Mexican towns of Tapachula, on the southern border with Guatemala, and Ciudad Acuna in the north, on the Texas border, where they live. in the heat and in unsanitary conditions. Fleeing poverty and chaos, they seek refuge in the United States, many of them after crossing a dozen countries like Panama and Colombia, where some 19,000 migrants, also mostly Haitians, are stranded in the frontier.
The United States had suspended deportations of Haitian irregular migrants after the earthquake that devastated the southern half of Haiti on August 14, but the regrouping in a few days of more than 15,000 migrants, under a bridge in Texas, has changed the game. Since Sunday, the American migration services have already chartered twelve flights to return more than 1,400 people, including several hundred children, to the capital Port-au-Prince and Cap-Haitien, the country’s second city.
Photos showing border guards on horseback pushing back migrants near Del Rio, Texas, have since Monday aroused strong emotion in the United States, where Joe Biden’s administration announced the opening of an investigation to shed light on the facts. In a rare criticism, the leader of the Democratic majority in the Senate, Chuck Schumer, also urged Joe Biden on Tuesday to immediately end the expulsions, described as“Ignoble”. “Such a decision goes against common sense” and of “Decency”, he rebelled, stressing that the difficult conditions in Haiti meant that the country could not “Not receive them”.
The United States is one of the powers likely to exert an influence on Haiti, a country which it occupied militarily for nineteen years, from 1915 to 1934. But President Joe Biden has ruled out any sending of American soldiers, despite the request in this direction of the Haitian government to secure the Caribbean country.