Haiti’s Economic Minister Responds After Canada Reportedly Freezes Aid to Disaster-Struck Nation

Tristin Hopper, National Post, January 7, 2013

Canada’s reported freezing of aid money to Haiti has prompted the country’s economic minister to declare that “Canada is very bad.”

“I do not have one gourde [Haitian currency] from the Canadian government in my budget,” said minister of Economy and Finance Marie Carmelle Jean-Marie, according to a report published by the Haitian news website Defend Haiti.

Last week, Montreal’s La Presse newspaper quoted International Co-operation Minister Julian Fantino and insinuated that Canada was freezing aid to the Caribbean country, which is the largest recipient of Canadian foreign aid.

Mr. Fantino said he was disappointed at what he considered the lack of progress in Haiti witnessed during his November visit.

Ms. Jean-Marie also criticized Canadian government travel advisories against Haiti, which warn that the country is “particularly unstable and dangerous.”

“It’s as if every time you leave the water, they sink our head, preventing us from breathing,” she said.

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