First charter flight with US citizens fleeing Haiti lands in Miami

First Charter Flight Carrying US Citizens Escaping Haiti Arrives in Miami

In Miami, a charter flight arrived, bringing U.S. citizens who were escaping the increasing gang violence in Haiti, as confirmed by officials from the U.S. State Department. The flight, which carried over 30 U.S. citizens, touched down at Miami International Airport. This arrival followed a warning from the U.S. Embassy in Port-au-Prince, urging Americans to leave Haiti “as soon as possible” due to the escalating chaos.

Avlot Quessa, a Boston resident, shared his journey to catch the charter flight from Haiti, where he initially went for a week-long visit to see his mother last month. Quessa expressed his distress over the situation in Haiti, his homeland, describing the violence and destruction as “terrible” and “stressful.”

The situation in Haiti has worsened, with the main airport in Port-au-Prince shutting down after gang attacks. These attacks have led to severe consequences, including pushing many to the edge of famine. Over the weekend, reports emerged of looting of aid supplies, highlighting the dire circumstances.

To assist American citizens in leaving Haiti, the State Department announced it would provide limited charter flights from Cap-Haïtien, a northern city less affected by the chaos. However, they mentioned that ground transportation to Cap-Haïtien would not be provided, advising U.S. citizens to use the charter flights only if they could safely reach the airport.

The Department of State has urged U.S. citizens still in Haiti and wishing to leave to contact them through a crisis intake form on their website, if they haven’t done so already.

Passengers on the U.S. government-coordinated flights are required to sign a promissory bill, agreeing to reimburse the government for the cost of the flight. Marie Lucie St. Fleur, 69, from West Palm Beach and another passenger on Sunday’s flight, shared her heartache over the situation in Haiti, expressing her desire to live in her homeland, which is currently not possible due to the circumstances.

Upon arrival in Miami, government officials were ready to assist the evacuees in figuring out their next steps. Additionally, last week, the U.S. military deployed extra forces to enhance security at the U.S. Embassy in Haiti, located in an area largely under gang control.