Canada evacuating vulnerable Canadian citizens out of Haiti: Joly

Foreign Affairs Minister Mélanie Joly says Canada is airlifting vulnerable Canadians out of Haiti by helicopter to the Dominican Republic as conditions continue to deteriorate. 

Minister of Foreign Affairs Melanie Joly speaks in the Foyer of the House of Commons on Parliament Hill in Ottawa, on Friday, March 1, 2024. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Justin Tan

Haiti has been in a profound security crisis since mid-2021, when gangs took control of key infrastructure and started violent turf wars that have led to a collapse of most medical and food systems in the country.

Two weeks ago, unelected Haitian Prime Minister Ariel Henry agreed to resign once a transitional council is formed to oversee an international military intervention led by Kenya.

Earlier this month, Canada airlifted most of its diplomats from its embassy in Port-au-Prince by helicopter, sending them to the neighbouring Dominican Republic to work remotely because of an increasingly volatile security situation.

Officials said on March 14 there were close to 3,000 Canadians officially registered as remaining in the country. Some have since reportedly left through private evacuation services.

So far, Joly says, Canada has airlifted 18 vulnerable Canadians out of the country.

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