Dominica to ‘build a wall’ to stop illegal immigration from Haiti

The Dominican Republic announced today that it will build a 380-kilometer fence along its border with neighboring Haiti to curb social problems.

The BBC reports that Dominican President Luis Abinader said the wall will help the two countries reduce the endless problems of illegal immigration, drugs, stolen cars and more.

Construction of the fence is expected to begin later this year, but Abinader did not disclose the cost of the project. He told Congress, “Within two years, we want to end the serious problems of illegal immigration, drug smuggling, stolen car deliveries and other serious problems.”

Abinader also said that in some “conflict” zones will be arranged double fences, and then equipped with motion sensors, infrared scanning systems and facial recognition cameras.

The newspaper pointed out that the Dominican Republic, with a population of 11 million, has an estimated 500,000 immigrants from Haiti, most of whom are illegally smuggled. The Dominican government announced in January this year that it would provide identification documents for Haitians in the country. Haiti is one of the poorest countries in the Western Hemisphere.

Relations between the two countries have long been poor due to historical factors. The Dominican Republic gained its independence from Spain in 1821, but was annexed by the Haitian military the following year, and only separated from Haiti through war in 1844.