Dominican Republic: one year after ruling Nr. 168-13 ( Part II)


A post by Petre Jordens. For Part I go to Dominican Republic: one year after ruling Nr. 168-13 (Part I)

In an editorial for Dominican daily Hoy titled ‘UNHCR― a mirror of the truth that we wish to deny,’

Marien Aristy Capitán reflects on the first anniversary of ruling 168-13 of the Constitutional Court of the Dominican Republic. For the original text (in Spanish), visit

The Birthday came without cards, candles or cake. Those that celebrated it, if any, did so in the privacy of their vileness and allowed the date to pass without sounding the drum of their disgrace.

Tuesday, September 23, marked the first anniversary of ruling 168-13 which stripped the nationality from thousands of Dominicans of foreign undocumented parentage who were born here before the Constitution of 2010 came into force and changed the criteria for granting nationality.

Today, one year after that sad memorable occasion, our society remains divided and clouded by the issue. Therefore, in an effort at ‘nationalist heroism,’ some have now asked that the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) leave the country, without realizing that in making this request, we are incriminating ourselves. Why does their work bother us so much, when all they have done is defend the right to nationality of those people from whom we have stolen it? Yes, I know they will say that they are not Dominicans. In that case, however, we could say that they are refugees seeking in the Dominican Republic what they would never have in ‘their country’: a homeland.

The work of the UNHCR and of Gonzalo Vargas Llosa [Head of the UNCHR mission in the Dominican Republic] has bothered many. And it could not be otherwise: in this place, which they insist on calling a country, we have always pretended that we can screw others without anyone protesting. How could we possibly forgive a foreigner who reveals the miserable way in which we treat our own? It is for that reason, for unmasking us, that they want to punish the UNCHR.

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