Joint Statement on Incident with Guadeloupe Nationals in Transit in Dominica
The Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Discover Dominica Authority and the Honorary Consul of France in Dominica, has issued the following statement on the recent incident involving French nationals from Guadeloupe in transit to Dominica on March 9, 2014.
The statement listed a series of events leading up to the arrest.
According to the official report, the passengers who were scheduled to travel to Guadeloupe from Puerto Rico were in transit in Dominica on a LIAT flight, which landed at Melville Hall Airport.
The passengers had already endured flight delays during the flight and on arrival in Dominica they were not provided with sufficient information on their eventual departure to Guadeloupe by LIAT.
A group of these passengers entered the secure zone of the airport and refused to return to the in transit lounge, even after being warned that it was against the law to be on the tarmac without proper authorisation.
This being the case, the police were called in to maintain order and were left with no choice but to arrest the passengers.
Arrangements were subsequently made by the Honorary Consul for the children, ages 8, 15 and 19 to be flown to Guadeloupe by private charter the next day.
The passengers who were detained were brought before the Courts the next day and were fined for the offense committed in keeping with the laws of Dominica.
The report concluded stating; “We wish to reiterate that Dominica welcomes all visitors to its shores, and regrets that the visiting passengers had such an unpleasant experience in Dominica en route to Guadeloupe. We also wish to state that the Commonwealth of Dominica is a sovereign nation and officials charged with maintaining law and order are duty bound to uphold the laws of the land.”