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A map of HaitiA map of Haiti Haiti occupies the western part of the island of Hispaniola in the West Indies, which it shares with the Dominican Republic. It also includes the islands of Gonâve and Tortue (Tortuga). Haiti is dominated by high, rugged mountains that lie inland from the coastal plains. The plains have a hot, humid climate, while conditions in the mountains are cooler and wetter. Haiti used to covered by forests, but over the last century nearly all of its trees have been cut down. This has led to soil erosion—making it more difficult to grow crops and putting the treeless land at risk from floods.

A map of HaitiA map of Haiti

"Tap tap" bus in Port-Salut

People and economy

Haiti’s people are descended from Africans who were brought to the island as slaves in the 17th century. In rural areas, nearly everyone depends on farming to make a living. The soil is poor; most people grow maize, beans and cassava on small family farms. In the city, many people work in textile factories producing T-shirts, sweatshirts and suits for export to the USA. Large numbers of Haitians live and work abroad, especially in the neighbouring Dominican Republic and the Bahamas.

Cabbage field in upland HaitiCabbage field in upland Haiti

Haiti is the only country in the world to have been established as the result of a slave rebellion.

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