The Haitian government denied U.S. accusations that Haiti is being used as gateway into the United States by foreign nationals, including Pakistanis and Palestinians. Speaking after a decision regarding a Haitian immigrant, U.S. Attorney General John Ashcroft on Friday said national security would take priority in immigration cases, and migrants could be detained while their asylum cases were pending. Ashcroft also cited State Department information that purportedly showed an increase in third country nationals, specifically Pakistanis and Palestinians, using Haiti as an illegal entry point into the United States. “Haiti doesn’t welcome or shelter terrorists,” Haendel Carre, spokesman for President Jean-Bertrand Aristide, said Tuesday. “We don’t understand why Haiti is being abusively singled out.” The State Department has refused to say how many foreign nationals have allegedly used Haiti to enter the United States. When asked to supply numbers, State Department spokesman Chip Barclay said Tuesday the department “stood by its assertion” but could not supply numbers. Full Story
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