Haiti bans charter flights to Nicaragua in blow to migrants fleeing poverty and violence: what are the consequences
The Haitian government has banned all charter flights to Nicaragua, which migrants fleeing poverty and violence have increasingly used to reach the United States. Find out more about the reason for the cancellation of charter flights from Haiti to Nicaragua, what changes are expected at the Haitian airport and how many flights arrived from Haiti to Nicaragua
On October 30, 2023, Haiti's National Civil Aviation Authority (OFNAC) temporarily suspended all charter flights from Haiti to Nicaragua's capital, Managua. The sudden cancellation of flights caused a collapse at Toussaint Louverture International Airport, several hundred Haitian passengers and their luggage were forced to wait for information from the government. On that day, 5 flights were scheduled on the above route. What is the reason for the ban? More details below.
What is the reason for the cancellation of charter flights from Haiti to Nicaragua?
According to the director general of the National Civil Aviation Authority, Laurent Joseph Dumas, this measure was aimed at organizing flights, because serious problems regarding safety, comfort, logistics, etc. were observed on the route.
The country's leadership says that flights will resume in the coming days and Haitians will be able to travel to Nicaragua again after the reorganization of charter flights.
What changes await the Haiti airport?
It is scheduled to operate only four flights between 7:00 AM and 3:00 PM with an average of 150 passengers per flight and 7 flights between 3:00 AM and 10:00 PM.
Also, the National Airport Administration (AAN) is obliged to develop the passenger reception area and increase the number of sanitary equipment, because too large passenger flows put a lot of pressure on the airport infrastructure.
How many flights have arrived from Haiti to Nicaragua
According to official information, the Augusto S. Sandino International Airport in Nicaragua has received at least 260 charter flights from Haiti in the last three months, and the number is increasing every month. In August, 30 flights between Haiti and Nicaragua were recorded, in September - 100, and in October already 138 charter flights.
The passengers are mostly Haitians. Since August 2023, 31,475 people have left Haiti by air. Nicaragua is considered a transit point for migrants fleeing poverty and violence in Haiti and heading to the United States.
The cost of a ticket usually ranges from $2,500 to $3,000, sometimes more.
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Photo: REUTERS/Ricardo Arduengo
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