Surf Taiwan News, Browse the World »
UN chief speaks on Dominican citizenship issue
UN chief meets with Dominican legislators, urges humanitarian solution to citizenship issue
By EZEQUIEL ABIU LOPEZ
Associated Press
2014-07-17 03:01 AM

SANTO DOMINGO, Dominican Republic (AP) -- U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon urged legislators during a visit to the Dominican Republic on Wednesday to find a humanitarian solution to a fiercely debated court decision that could render thousands of people of Haitian descent stateless.

Ban spoke to the Caribbean country's bicameral legislature a day after meeting with President Danilo Medina.

"It won't be easy," he said. "This requires compromise and tough consultations. It requires your compassion as human beings and as leaders of this country."

The Dominican Republic recently passed a law that would create a path to citizenship for the descendants of tens of thousands of migrants who came from neighboring Haiti. But human rights groups have said the law will likely exclude the majority of people born in the Dominican Republic to migrants, leaving them essentially stateless.

Ban asked that legislators keep working to protect the rights of all people and prevent what he called "the privatization of nationality."

Ban is scheduled to meet later Wednesday with local U.N. officials and with a group that runs a literacy program for adults before leaving the Dominican Republic.

The U.N. chief was previously in Haiti, where he launched a program to help improve sanitation and combat cholera. Some people in Haiti criticized his visit, noting that many blame U.N. peacekeepers for introducing the disease that has killed more than 8,500 people and sickened about 700,000 in the impoverished country.

HOME |  WORLD |  Politics |  Business |  Sports |  Lifestyle |  TAIWAN |  Technology |  Health |  SUPPLEMENT |  Society |  OPINION
  • Taiwan News  ©  2014 All Rights Reserved.