United States of America: Failure to protect Haitian refugees
Tens of thousands of Haitians have fled widespread and massive human rights violations in Haiti since a military coup ousted democratically elected President Aristide in October 1991. Over 42,000 have tried to reach the USA by sea. More than 30,000 of these have been forcibly returned to Haiti by the US authorities: about 24,000 after inadequate examination of their request for protection and over 7,000 without even the most cursory examination of their asylum claim. AI is concerned that this policy is a gross violation of the internationally recognized principle of non- refoulement. By acting in disregard of this principle, AI fears that US Government policy may undermine the international regime for protection of those fleeing human rights violations.