Institute for Justice and Democracy in Haiti

Why did the IOM remove deportations from its DR press release?

In a recent press release, the International Organization for Migration (IOM) investigated and found that 408 people has been deported from the Dominican Republic to Haiti. Following a statement from U.S. Special Coordinator for Haiti Thomas Adams which said that deportations hadn’t yet begun, the IOM replaced the press release with one that mentioned no deportations. Instead, the new release talked about “returns” to Haiti. This article investigates what may have motivated these changes.

Part of the article is below. Click HERE for the full text.

Deportations from the Dominican Republic: The IOM Changes its Tune

Haiti: Relief and Reconstruction Watch, Center for Economic and Policy Research

July 22, 2015

On July 14, 2015, the International Organization for Migration (IOM) released a statement regarding the situation on the Haiti-Dominican Republic border. The IOM interviewed some 1,133 individuals who had crossed the border between June 16 and July 3, finding that “408 persons (or 36.0 per cent) said that they had been deported by different entities, including the military, police, immigration officials and civilians.” These findings directly contradicted statements from the Dominican Republic and U.S. officials that no deportations had occurred.

However, within two days the press release was pulled from the IOM website and on July 21, IOM issued a new press release making no mention of deportations.

U.S. Special Coordinator for Haiti Thomas Adams, testifying before the Senate Foreign Relations Committee on July 15, 2015, stated, “They — they [the Dominican Republic] have assured us that there will be no mass deportations and none have begun yet.” He added: “There were reports of others that when they investigated, they found out that they weren’t — they weren’t really deportees.” A day later the IOM press release had been pulled from the website.

Click HERE for the full text.

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