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Episode 35

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The Sentence

Juliana Deguis never left the country of her birth. But one day, the Supreme Court declared her an immigrant.

Producer: Luis Trelles
Editing and sound mix: Camila Segura and Daniel Alarcón

Click here to read the full transcript in Spanish.

Luis Trelles traveled to the Dominican Republic to investigate this story. These are some of the photographs he took during his trip:

Created with flickr slideshow.

The Los Jovillos batey is located about two hours from Santo Domingo, but the distance that separates this small community from the Dominican capital feels a lot bigger. Bateyes are settlements founded by sugar cane workers, and like Los Jovillos there are many other similar communities throughout the Dominican Republic.

But this batey became famous thanks to a particular resident: Juliana Deguis Pierre, who was born in the Dominican Republic to Haitian parents. Juliana has been fighting for over 10 years to have her Dominican nationality recognized by the government.

In 2013, the Dominican Republic’s Constitutional Tribunal issued a ruling, revoking her Dominican citizenship and that of 200 thousand other people in the same situation. With this ruling, Juliana became a foreigner inside her own country.


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