‘Issue may require Caricom mediation’
Anna Ramdass email@example.com
Foreign Affairs Minister Winston Dookeran yesterday said Caricom should use its goodwill to bring about a resolution to the controversy with respect to relations between the Dominican Republic and Haiti.
Last week the country’s Constitutional Court ruled the children of undocumented migrants who have been in the Dominican Republic and registered as Dominicans as far back as 1929 cannot have Dominican nationality, as their parents are considered to be “in transit”.
The judgment opens a new chapter in the troubled history of relations between Spanish-speaking Dominican Republic and French Creole-speaking Haiti, which share Hispaniola.
Since it threatens to leave stateless and without rights large numbers of Haitian-origin people born in the Dominican Republic, it is likely to be challenged through the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights and the Inter-American Court of Human Rights.
Dookeran, speaking to the Express yesterday on the phone before leaving for Panama, said it was an issue that may require Caricom mediation depending on the information.
“We should seize ourselves of the issues. We cannot interfere in the domestic affairs, but I think we should use our good office to search for a solution,” said Dookeran.
“We need to get some more information. I will request a report,” he said.
On another note, Dookeran said the meetings in Panama will bring huge benefits for Trinidad and Tobago.
Prime Minister Kamla Persad-Bissessar left for Panama on Tuesday.
“We are signing a partial scope agreement which is a major achievement in terms of opening the doorway to Latin America, in this case Panama which means to our exporters we’ll have preferential access to markets,” he said.
Leonard Robinson, assistant to Caricom Secretary General Irwin LaRocque, told the Express the secretary general will comment on the matter after he receives detailed information on the matter.
LaRocque will speak at 5.30 p.m. on the topic “Where is Caricom Going” at Daaga Auditorium, UWI, St Augustine campus. It is the “Distinguished Open Lecture” and forms part of the Caricom Leaders lecture series.