Tuesday, 19 October 2021

Canada to evacuate 113 citizens from Haiti amid violent unrest

© AP Photo / Dieu Nalio Chery

OTTAWA: Canada will bring from Haiti 113 nationals, who were unable to return to their homeland as protests gripped the Caribbean nation, Francois Legault, the prime minister of Canada’s eastern province of Quebec, said.

“Air Transat [airline] has just confirmed to me that the 113 passengers will be brought back from Haiti by a flight tomorrow”, Legault wrote on Twitter on Friday.

Earlier this week, several groups of Canadians were unable to make their way to the Port-au-Prince international airport as roads in and out of the city were blocked by anti-government protesters.

Since Wednesday, the Canadian embassy in Haiti has been closed. Moreover, Ottawa advised Canadian citizens against traveling to Haiti due to violent protests there. The US State Department issued the same recommendation, adding it had recalled its “non-emergency” staff and family members amid the surging unrest.

Haiti has been hit by another wave of violent protests for over a week with at least 7 demonstrators killed. Protesters are calling on President Jovenel Moise to step down over allegations of misuse of billions of dollars in funds intended for social development programs amid extreme poverty in the country.

Back in summer, the Haitian authorities announced a reduction of fuel subsidies as part of an agreement with the International Monetary Fund (IMF) in a bid to cope with inflation and budget deficit. The measure has triggered protests during which demonstrators barricaded roads, looted stores and set cars ablaze in the country’s capital Port-au-Prince.

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