Lynching of Haitian Man Highlights Tension in Dominican Republic

Carlos Nerilus, a Haitian man living in the Dominican Republic’s capital, Santo Domingo, was lynched and beheaded last week by an angry mob. The incident was allegedly sparked by Nerilus's attack on his employer the day before, a construction foreman identified as Pascual de Leon.

Police say that an "inflamed throng" got a hold of Nerilus and proceeded to lynch him before gruesomely beheading him. Onlookers cheered, applauded and laughed, and some even took cell phone photos and videos of the incident.

There is a history of violence between the neighboring countries, with this incident causing tensions to run particularly high. Kély Bastien, president of the Haitian senate, insisted that due to the gravity of the crime his Government “must go beyond an official protest” and “call the Haitian ambassador in Dominican Republic to Port-au-Prince.” Dominican Foreign Relations Minister Carlos Morales has since condemned the act and pledged to prosecute the responsible parties.

Tell us: Do you believe racism is still alive and well across Latin America? Do you think Dominicans and Haitians will ever be able to move past their violent past?