Global Affairs issues travel advisory for Canadians in Haiti following president's assassination
TORONTO -- Following the assassination of the Haitian president, Global Affairs Canada is advising Canadians in Haiti to limit their movements and warning that the situation in the country "could worsen quickly."
In a travel advisory issued Wednesday, Global Affairs said the current situation in Haiti is "volatile" and urged Canadians in the country to avoid areas where demonstrations or large gatherings are taking place.
Global Affairs told CTVNews.ca in an email that 2,626 Canadians are currently registered with the Registration of Canadians Abroad in Haiti.
“As registration with the service is voluntary, this is not a complete picture of Canadians outside the country, nor an indication of the number of Canadians abroad that wish to stay or leave,” the department said.
In the advisory, Global Affairs said local authorities have closed Toussaint Louverture International Airport amid the unrest while the border with the Dominican Republic is also closed until further notice.
Global Affairs says Canadians in Haiti should monitor local media, including social media, to stay informed on the "evolving situation" in the country as well as follow the instructions of local authorities.
The agency is also advising any upcoming Canadian travellers to avoid all non-essential travel to Haiti "due to the potential for civil unrest throughout the country." Global Affairs added that kidnappings of foreigners, dual-citizens and Haitians has increased in recent months in Port-au-Prince, the country’s capital.
Global Affairs noted that the Embassy of Canada to Haiti has temporarily closed following the president's assassination.
Gunmen assassinated Haitian President Jovenel Moise and wounded his wife in their home early Wednesday, inflicting chaos on the unstable Caribbean country that was already dealing with increased gang violence, anti-government protests and a surge in COVID-19 infections.
Claude Joseph, the interim prime minister, confirmed the killing and said the police and military were in control of security in Haiti.
Canadian citizens in Haiti requiring emergency consular assistance should contact the Embassy of Canada to Haiti at 011 (509) 2-812-9000 or email@example.com
They can also contact Global Affairs Canada’s Emergency Watch and Response Centre by calling +1 613 996 8885 (call collect where available), by text message at +1 613-686-3658 or by sending an email to firstname.lastname@example.org
With files from The Associated Press