Haiti - Social : The Bahamas will continue to repatriate illegal Haitian
Despite this demand, which is intended to replace a similar request made by the UNHCR, shortly after the January 2010 earthquake in Haiti, Brent Symonette, Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Bahamas [in charge of immigration], has stated that the position of his Government had not changed since, that it announced last week that the repatriations will continue "We are a sovereign country and we will obviously discuss the issue on the ground in Haiti, but unless things change in this country, our policy will remain the same."
The Minister recalls that it would be unwise for a developing country such as The Bahamas to allow a large number of uneducated and unskilled people to remain in a country struggling to escape recession after the 2008 financial crisis. In 2009, the unemployment rates in New Providence and Grand Bahama exceeded 14 percent and 17 percent, respectively.
The Bahamas can not and should not follow the suggestion of the UN, that is the position of the Government of the Bahamas, which explains that with a population of nearly 10 million in Haiti, there would likely be an unprecedented mass exodus from that country to The Bahamas, if the government announces that the repatriations are suspended indefinitely, "those who wish to leave Haiti, they will consider our country as a preferred destination". The Bahamas recall that the number of Haitians living illegally in the Bahamas is estimated between 30,000 and 80,000 and that such a policy would be disastrous and will lead to social tensions between the indigenous people seeking work and the new class of migrants.
The Minister in charge of immigration, states that the Government of the Bahamas gave the correct answer by ignoring the request of the UN. Recalling that the two richest countries of the hemisphere are the United States and Canada and if these countries want to host thousands of Haitian refugees, they can afford.
See also :
http://www.haitilibre.com/article-822-haiti-social-323-boat-people-rapatries.html (in french)
http://www.haitilibre.com/article-213-haiti-social-85-boat-people-interceptes-a-3-miles-au-sud-de-french-cay.html (in french)
http://www.haitilibre.com/article-656-haiti-usa-97-boat-people-rappatries-au-cap-haitien.html (in french)
http://www.haitilibre.com/article-40-haiti-seisme-105-boat-people-interceptes.html (in french)