Haiti and Dominican Republic: Procedures for crossing the Haiti-Dominican Republic land border, particularly for Haitian nationals (2016-October 2018) [ZZZ106192.FE]

Research Directorate, Immigration and Refugee Board of Canada

1. Overview

In an interview with the Research Directorate, a representative of the embassy of Haiti in Ottawa stated that [translation] “in practice” the border between Haiti and the Dominican Republic is “extremely porous”; despite both countries’ visa requirements, “many people” cross the border without visas in both directions (Haiti 23 Oct. 2018). The same source specified that the border, which stretches 350 km and has only three or four border checkpoints, is difficult to control, despite the frequent deployment of the Dominican army (Haiti 23 Oct. 2018).

In a telephone interview with the Research Directorate, a representative of the embassy of the Dominican Republic in Rabat, Morocco [1], who had previously been posted in Ottawa, stated that [translation] “numerous” Haitian citizens illegally cross the land border into the Dominican Republic (Dominican Republic 24 Oct. 2018). According to the same source, a government border control program has been in effect on the Dominican side [translation] “for a few months” (Dominican Republic 24 Oct. 2018). It consists in using drones and deploying a special army corps dedicated to border protection (Dominican Republic 24 Oct. 2018). According to the same source, Haitian citizens continue to cross the land border illegally despite the program (Dominican Republic 24 Oct. 2018).

2. Procedures for Crossing the Land Border from Haiti into the Dominican Republic
2.1 Procedures for Exiting Haiti

The representative of the Haitian embassy stated that both Haitian and Dominican citizens who exit Haiti via the land border to enter the Dominican Republic must have their passports stamped by the Haitian immigration authorities (Haiti 23 Oct. 2018).

Information on whether passport holders must be present when their passports are stamped by the Haitian immigration authorities or whether someone else may have the passport stamped for them could not be found among the sources consulted by the Research Directorate within the time constraints of this Response.

2.2 Procedures for Entering the Dominican Republic

The representative of the embassy of the Dominican Republic stated that Haitian citizens must have a visa to enter the Dominican Republic (Dominican Republic 24 Oct. 2018). The same source added that he did not know whether there was an exception to the visa policy for Haitian citizens crossing the land border to sell merchandise in a market held twice weekly in the Dominican Republic (Dominican Republic 24 Oct. 2018).

According to the same source, both Haitian and Dominican citizens must appear in person before the Dominican immigration authorities to have their passports stamped (Dominican Republic 24 Oct. 2018). Passport holders must be present when having their passports stamped by the Dominican immigration authorities (Dominican Republic 24 Oct. 2018).

3. Procedures for Crossing the Land Border from the Dominican Republic into Haiti
3.1 Procedures for Exiting the Dominican Republic

The representative of the embassy of the Dominican Republic stated that both Haitian and Dominican citizens exiting the Dominican Republic via the land border to enter Haiti must appear in person before the Dominican immigration authorities to have their passports stamped (Dominican Republic 24 Oct. 2018). Passport holders must be present when having their passports stamped by the Dominican immigration authorities (Dominican Republic 24 Oct. 2018).

3.2 Procedures for Entering Haiti

The representative of the embassy of Haiti stated that Dominican citizens must have a visa to enter Haiti (Haiti 23 Oct. 2018). Both Haitian and Dominican citizens must appear before the Haitian immigration authorities to have their passports stamped (Haiti 23 Oct. 2018).

Information on whether passport holders must be present when their passports are stamped by the Haitian immigration authorities or whether someone else may have the passport stamped for them could not be found among the sources consulted by the Research Directorate within the time constraints of this Response.

This Response was prepared after researching publicly accessible information currently available to the Research Directorate within time constraints. This Response is not, and does not purport to be, conclusive as to the merit of any particular claim for refugee protection. Please find below the list of sources consulted in researching this Information Request.

Note

[1] The representative of the embassy of the Dominican Republic specified that before providing his answers, he consulted colleagues in the international co-operation section of the Dominican Ministry of the Economy who often cross the land border to carry out their duties (Dominican Republic 24 Oct. 2018).

References

Dominican Republic. 24 October 2018. Embassy in Rabat. Telephone interview with a representative.

Haiti. 23 October 2018. Embassy in Ottawa. Interview with a representative.

Additional Sources Consulted

Internet sites, including: ecoi.net; UN – Refworld.