US authorities begun repatriating migrants under Del Rio bridge
For 320 Haitians Port-au-Prince is their new old home
The United States has begun sending back Haitian migrants who had gathered under a bridge in Texas. Last day there were three flights from San Antonio to Port-au-Prince, the capital of Haiti. That’s 320 people flying back.
Today and tomorrow there are also planes leaving and from Wednesday seven flights are scheduled daily, four to Port-au-Prince and three to Cap-Haïtien.
In recent days, an estimated 12,000 people gathered under a bridge in the American border town of Del Rio. Most of them come from Haiti, but there are also migrants from Mexico, Guatemala, Honduras and El Salvador. The migrants reached the US by crossing the border river from the Mexican town of Ciudad Acuña. The water is so low there, the river is fordable.
The United States initially did little to stop the flow of people, but that is now different. American officials try to prevent people from crossing the river on the bank.
No asylum for those Haitians
Attempts are being made to place the refugees in refugee camps, but there is far too little capacity there. The Department of Homeland Security announced earlier that people who are not allowed to stay in the US will be deported quickly. Human rights lawyers criticize the accelerated procedure because refugees are not allowed to apply for asylum.
Refugees from Central American countries who are not allowed to stay are deported to Mexico. Haitians can’t do that because Mexico won’t let them in. Haiti is the poorest country on the American continent and is regularly affected by natural disasters. Last month, there was a massive earthquake that killed at least 2200 people. Large numbers of people became homeless.