The US special envoy to Haiti resigned after only two months over the Biden administration’s “inhumane treatment of migrants.” The move marks the sharpest instance of internal criticism over the White House’s handling of the ongoing migrant crisis. Daniel Foote wrote a letter of resignation to Secretary of State Antony Blinken.
“I will not be associated with the United States’ inhumane, counterproductive decision to deport thousands of Haitian refugees and illegal immigrants to Haiti, a country where American officials are confined to secure compounds because of the danger posed by armed gangs to daily life,” Foote wrote.
“Our policy approach to Haiti remains deeply flawed, and my recommendations have been ignored and dismissed, when not edited to project a narrative different from my own.”
Foote was appointed special envoy for Haiti in July following the assassination of President Jovenel Moïse. In his letter, Foote outlined the country’s poverty and gang violence problems.
“The collapsed state is unable to provide security or basic services, and more refugees will fuel further desperation and crime,” he wrote.
Foote criticized the US for its involvement in the political fallout following Moïse’s assassination, backing the de facto prime minister, and warned that such interventions have “consistently produced catastrophic results.”
“The hubris that makes us believe that we should pick the winner — again — is impressive,” Foote wrote.
Foote’s scathing resignation letter comes after 14,000 Haitian migrants gathered in an impromptu camp under a bridge in Del Rio, Texas. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) flew hundreds out every day without the opportunity to seek asylum.
State Department spokesperson Ned Price responded to Foote’s letter in a statement.
“It is unfortunate that, instead of participating in a solutions-oriented policy process, Special Envoy Foote has both resigned and mischaracterized the circumstances of his resignation,” Price said.