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PHOTOS | Families, activists demand release of Haitians deported after serving time in US


NEW YORK — Relatives of several deported men being held in Haiti’s National Penitentiary visited the General Consulate of Haiti in New York City Aug. 23 to hand in a petition demanding the release of their loved ones. The men jailed in Port-au-Prince had been deported after being convicted and serving prison sentences in the United States, a practice many have called unjust and shocking to experience.

“These men endure severe conditions in the National Penitentiary, including the lack of food, water and critical medicine. In late July 2022, widespread gun violence erupted near the prison, making it impossible for friends a family to deliver food and clean water. As a result, several of the men went for five days without any food,” read the petition.

About 30 supporters later joined the relatives in front of the Consulate’s building in midtown Manhattan for a rally to raise public awareness. Organizers Haydi Torres of Cosecha NJ and Eleni Baskt of CAIR Coalition are advocates for immigrant rights in the United States. 

Relatives of Haitian men incarcerated in Haiti wait for an audience with Marie-Andrée Amy, who heads the General Consulate of Haiti in New York, at the latter’s office on August 23, 2022. Photo by Leonardo March
Mabelle Casimir, sister of Jean Bertrang Casimir, addresses the group during the visit to the General Consulate of Haiti in New York on August 23, 2022. Photo by Leonardo March
Signs made available for participants to rally in front of the Haitian consulate’s offices in New York. Photo by Leonardo March
Mabelle and Berline Casimir, sisters of Jean Bertrang Casimir, a deported Haitian man currently detained in Haiti, address the crowd during the protest on August 23, 2022, in front of the Haitian consulate’s offices in New York. Jean Bertrang Casimir was deported from the US and has been jailed in Haiti since arriving there, despite not committing any crimes in that country. Photo by Leonardo March
A woman makes a video of Eleni Baskt, from CAIR Coalition, addressing the crowd during the protest on August 23, 2022, in front of the Haitian consulate’s offices in New York. Photo by Leonardo March
Eleni Baskt, from CAIR Coalition, addresses the crowd during the protest in front of the Haitian consulate’s offices in New York. Photo by Leonardo March
Jahsiah Montrevil addresses the crowd on August 23, 2022. during the protest in front of the Haitian consulate’s offices in New York. Jahsiah’s father Jean Montrevil was deported to Haiti in January of 2018 over a drug offense committed in his 20s. Jean Montrevil was able to return to the US in 2021.

Leonardo March is Brooklyn-based visual journalist from Puerto Rico and a Report for America corps member

Leonardo can be reached at Leonardo@haitiantimes.com

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