Former US Special Envoy Criticizes Biden’s Approach to Haiti
In SummaryDaniel Foote, the former special envoy to Haiti, said the approach is a “recipe for disaster.”
The former U.S. special envoy to Haiti is speaking out against the Biden administration’s approach to handling migrants from the country.
Daniel Foote was appointed to the role by the State Department in July after Haiti’s president was assassinated. The goal of his appointment was to engage with partners in the country to promote the country’s stability and efforts to hold free and fair elections.
Less than four months later, Foote resigned in September, and he criticized the United States’ treatment of Haitian migrants at the U.S.-Mexico border, BNC previously reported. In his resignation letter, Foote wrote, “I will not be associated with the United States’ inhumane, counterproductive decision to deport thousands of Haitian refugees and illegal immigrants to Haiti, a country where American officials are confined to secure compounds because of the dangers posed by armed gangs in control of daily life.”
The Biden Administration has deported more than 14,000 Haitians since September, The Hill reported. The expulsions were allowed under Title 42, which is an emergency regulation from the Department of Health and Human Services that allows people to be blocked from entering the country due to the ongoing pandemic.
Foote spoke to The Hill about his thoughts on the Biden Administration’s handling of Haiti. “Desperate people without anything being reintroduced into a city with tens of thousands of displaced people already from the gangs—recipe for disaster,” he said.
Haiti’s turmoil continued after the assassination of Jovenel Moïse in July. The nation also suffered from a major earthquake in August that took the lives of more than 1,000 people.
The country hopes to have an election, but political strife continues after Haiti’s Prime Minister Ariel Henry survived an assassination attempt. As BNC previously reported, Haiti’s Chief Prosecutor Bed-Ford Claude asked a judge to charge Henry in Moïse’s death, alleging he was in communication with a key suspect in Moïse’s murder on the night of the assassination.
“It became clear to me that the United States was just going to back Ariel Henry unless he died or something. That they were just behind him and they had put all their chips behind him,” Foote said. “And so I was like, you know what, I am not going to change this from the inside. Nobody’s listening.”