While worldwide attention to the Syrian refugee crisis is long-overdue, many Americans are overlooking a crisis much closer to home: On the border of Haiti and Dominican Republic, refugee camps are forming because of unjust citizenship laws imposed by the Dominican government. Fueled by xenophobia and racism, these laws have resulted in a large population of stateless individuals. This article recommends that “perhaps it is also time for the DR’s neighbors in the Americas to consider sanctioning the country until it fully addresses the refugee crisis it has created.”
Part of the article is below. Click HERE for the full text.
There’s Another Refugee Crisis That Has Nothing To Do With ISIS
Juliet Hooker, Slant
December 8, 2015
The outpouring of global solidarity with France that followed the recent terrorist attacks in Paris was almost immediately followed in the U.S. in some quarters by a xenophobic backlash against Syrian refugees. The United States has so far accepted few Syrian refugees, but more than two dozen Republican governors have declared that their states would not accept them.
In contrast to all the attention being devoted to the plight of those fleeing civil wars in the Middle East, a potential refugee crisis much closer to home is being ignored, that of Dominicans of Haitian descent rendered stateless by recent changes in Dominican nationality laws.
This summer Dominican-American novelist Junot Diaz noted that the legal limbo had created a “state of terror” among Dominicans of Haitian descent, and Haitian-American novelist Edwidge Danticat warned that it would lead to “a humanitarian crisis ready to happen.” Unfortunately, those predictions have proven largely true, even as most of the world continues to turn a blind eye.
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