Haitian man apparently lynched in Dominican city amid rising tensions-Added COMMENTARY By Haitian-Truth

Police dismissed racial motivation, but analysts said anti-Haitian sentiment is on the rise in the Caribbean nation

February 12, 2015 5:12PM ET
by Renee Lewis Al Jazeera:

The apparent lynching of a Haitian man in the Dominican Republic could add “more fuel to the fire” amid rising tensions between the two Caribbean nations, analysts said.

“Right now, whether this murder was racially motivated or not, whether it was a lynching or a personal vendetta, it doesn’t matter much at this point,” said Ernesto Sagas, associate professor in the ethnic studies department of Colorado State University and author of “Race and Politics in the Dominican Republic.”

“It comes at a very unfortunate moment because tensions are particularly high when it comes to the presence of Haitian workers in Dominican Republic, so this is adding more fuel to the fire,” Sagas told Al Jazeera.

Dominican authorities retrieved the body of the victim, identified by local media only as “Tulile” on Wednesday, after he was found hanged in Santiago’s Ercilla Pepin Park. He was discovered dangling from a tree with his hands and feet bound, Dominican Today reported, and worked in the park shining shoes.

Police quickly ruled out racism in the death of the Haitian man, according to local media. Instead, they said that the crime’s motive was to steal money from the man, who apparently had won $130.00 from a lottery ticket.

“For the Dominican authorities to rule out racism as a factor less than 24 hours after a man of Haitian descent was hanged in a public space is not just irresponsible policing, it is an outrageous example of discrimination endemic to the Dominican Republic,” Wade McMullen, an attorney with the Robert F. Kennedy Center for Justice and Human Rights, told the Huffington Post.

The murder comes at a time of heightened tensions between the two nations.

This week, a crowd of Dominicans burned a Haitian flag in Santiago, the Domican Republic’s second most populous city. They called called on the government to take a stand against what they perceived as an “invasion” of Haitian migrants into the country, Haiti Libre reported.

In the capital, Santo Domingo, anti-Haitian graffiti can be seen, reading, “Haitians get out.” The latest downturn in relations between Dominicans and people of Haitian descent was sparked by a 2013 Supreme Court that rendered some 200,000 Dominicans of Haitian descent stateless, prompting international condemnation.

According to the ruling, children of Haitian migrants — brought into the country during the early 20th century to work in Dominican fields — born in the Dominican Republic since 1930 had no right to stay in the country.

Anti-Haitian sentiment has been on the rise ever since, Sagas said.

“Haitians are utilized by the Dominican Republic as cheap labor, and as such they happen to be the scapegoats of Dominican society,” Sagas said. “When the economy is doing well, Haitians are tolerated. When the economy is not doing well, they need to be deported.”

The next presidential election in the Dominican Republic is in 2016, and the issue of immigrants from Haiti ihas often been used in the past to criticize political opponents.

“It is a political strategy that has worked before, to distract the people from other issues and rally the troops,” Sagas said.

Sagas referred to the anti-Haitian sentiment as a “monster that rears its ugly head” at politically or economically sensitive times. It is not the first lynching of a Haitian person in the Dominican Republic, according to local media. In 2009, Dominican police said a “inflamed throng” hanged and beheaded a Haitian man in Santo Domingo, according to Dominican Today.

“Poor Haitians are the scapegoats of Dominican society,” Sagas said.


No matter how the DR tries to sweep their dirt under the carpet, there is a violent prejudice against Haitians within the Dominican Republic.
This is fanned by the government, in its effort to neutralize this large portion of their populations since many of the people who receive the violence or prejudice are native born Dominicans – of Haitian descent.
The International Community must do more to settle this conflict.
More violence must follow if nothing is done.
More will die and the old “won some money in a lottery” trick can only be used so many times.


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2 thoughts on “Haitian man apparently lynched in Dominican city amid rising tensions-Added COMMENTARY By Haitian-Truth

  1. I am of Haitian decent,born in the Bahamas and moved back to Haiti the country of my parents,I came back here because I love Haiti and and the people of Haiti.When I came to Haiti,I invested my life saving and opened a business,The government and most of the Haitian public treated me worst than I had ever been treated my whole life.I was called blan,which means white,by the way I am a black Haitian ,they arrested me several times on all kinds of bogus charges and force me to give them all kinds of money,I tried to fight it but the kept calling me a stupid blan and force me to loose my business and my life saving,I had married a Haitian women while I was in Haiti she and her family also treate me the same.I still love Haiti and always will,but from my experience I find that my people are the racist on the planet and they see things the way they want to see it.I recently move to the Dominican republic and opened my business their and I was welcomed and treted very well.I have not been force to give money under the table and I have not been treated bad in any way.When they ask me were im from I tell them Haiti and I get plenty of respect-

  2. I’m glad to hear what Reginald Pierre have to say, I’m a Dominican and admit there is a lot racist and anti immigrants people in the DR like, we have in the U.S. The Dominican Republic are not using the poor Haitians as scapegoats, the Haitians are a really problem for this country and the international community need to understand the Dominican Republic is also a poor country that cannot afford that hundred of Haitians cross the border every single day, not country in the world would accept such thing. The Dominican hospitals are full of Haitians women given birth , these women cross the border just for this reason. The Haitians politicians are the one using the Dominican Republic as scapegoats, all Haiti problem is because of the DR, is not the DR fault that you guys don’t have a tree standing, resolve your problems in your side and we will take of our.

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