Society

Border town faces collapse as foreigners seek to flee Brazil

Immigrants who arrived in the country during the 2010s are now trying to escape Brazil's economic woes

immigrants south america crisis
Immigrant is injured in confrontation with the Peruvian police. Photo: Alexandre Noronha/Amazônia Real

In 2010, a devastating earthquake killed over 200,000 people in Haiti. With the Caribbean nation left in tatters, thousands of Haitians pulled up stakes and headed for Brazil — which was enjoying an economic boom at the time. The point of entry for many of these migrants was the state of Acre, on Brazil’s westernmost tip and part of the Amazon Basin. As one of the country’s poorest and least populous states, Acre struggled with the sudden influx of Haitian people and declared a state of social emergency in 2013. The wave of migration lasted until 2014.

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