Caribbean News Now!

About Us Contact Us

Countries/Territories

Jump to your country or territory of interest

Advertise with us

Reach our daily visitors from around the Caribbean and throughout the world. Click here for rates and placements.

Contribute

Submit news and opinion for publication

Subscribe

Click here to receive our daily regional news headlines by email.

Archives

Click here to browse our extensive archives going back to 2004

Also, for the convenience of our readers and the online community generally, we have reproduced the complete Caribbean Net News archives from 2004 to 2010 here.

Climate Change Watch

The Caribbean is especially vulnerable to rising sea levels brought about by global warming. Read the latest news and information here...

Follow Caribbean News Now on Twitter
Connect with Caribbean News Now on Linkedin



News from the Caribbean:


Back To Today's News

Dominican Republic ruling on citizenship has racist overtones, says activist
Published on October 25, 2013 Email To Friend    Print Version

By Ken Richards

NEW YORK, USA (WINN) -- A legal officer attached to the New York-based Open Society Foundations says her organization is very concerned about the September ruling of the constitutional court in the Dominican Republic that in essence makes hundreds of thousands of Dominicans stateless. The majority of those affected are Dominicans of Haitian descent.

Laura Bingham of the Open Society Justice Initiative said suggestions by some of those affected that the move is racist is not without merit.

“Absolutely it’s part of the problem. This is why there is so much distaste for this decision. And I don’t think it’s just intimated in the ruling, you know I think it’s direct there, it’s naked, it’s very obvious. There’s even a clause in the ruling that directly links nationality as a legal concept with notions of race and language, which is really quite frightening,” Bingham told WINN FM.

She added “There’s every reason to view this as a racially discriminatory denationalization, which is why it is so clearly in violation of international legal norms.”

Santo Domingo-based journalist Jean Michel Caroit, in an earlier interview with WINN FM, suggested that the denial of rights to Dominicans of Haitian descent was being pushed primarily by a small but influential right wing group attempting to define Dominicans based on a racist criteria.

St Kitts and Nevis Prime Minister Denzil Douglas told WINN FM recently that the government in Santo Domingo could enhance its chances of becoming a member of the Caribbean Community (CARICOM) by addressing the problem of statelessness being created for some of that country’s nationals.

Douglas said Dominicans who have a right to citizenship in Basseterre would not be discriminated against. Until 2004, all children born in the Dominican Republic enjoyed a constitutional right to Dominican nationality.

That meant that many children of Haitian migrants born in the Dominican Republic were recognized as Dominican and, as such, provided with Dominican identity documents. That has been changed by the constitutional court ruling. There are estimated to be over half a million Dominicans of Haitian descent, and a UN-backed study released this year estimated that there are nearly 210,000 first generation Dominican-born people of Haitian descent. These over 200,000 people are likely to be affected by a ruling that critics, including the Open Society Foundations, say will make them stateless.

Republished with permission of West Indies News Network
 
Reads: 21816





Click here to receive daily news headlines from Caribbean News Now!



Back...

Comments:

No comments on this topic yet. Be the first one to submit a comment.

Back...

Send us your comments!  

Send us your comments on this article. All fields are required.

For your contribution to reach us, you must (a) provide a valid e-mail address and (b) click on the validation link that will be sent to the e-mail address you provide.  If the address is not valid or you don't click on the validation link, we will never see it!

Your Name:

Your Email:

(Validation required)

Comments:
Enter Code



Please note that, if you are using an AT&T domain email address, e.g. att.net, bellsouth.net, sbcglobal.net, the verification email will likely not be delivered. This is outside of our control and the only remedy seems to be for readers to complain to AT&T





Disclaimer
User comments posted on this website are the sole views and opinions of the comment author and are not representative of Caribbean News Now or its staff. Caribbean News Now accepts no liability and will not be held accountable for user comments.
Caribbean News Now reserves the right to remove, edit or censor any comments. Any content that is considered unsuitable, unlawful or offensive, includes personal details, advertises or promotes products, services or websites or repeats previous comments will not be approved.
Before posting, please refer to our Terms of Use and Privacy Policy.

The Caribbean Writer 2014


Other Headlines:



Regional Sports: