Friday, November 20, 2015

A Thousand Cuban Migrants Stranded In Costa Rica Remain In Shelters

A Thousand Cuban Migrants Stranded In Costa Rica Remain In Shelters /
14ymedio, EFE
Posted on November 19, 2015

14ymedio/EFE, Managua/San Jose, 19 November2015 – Nearly a thousand
Cubans who find themselves stranded in Costa Rica on their journey to
the United States remain in six shelters set up by the Costa Rican
authorities to provide them with humanitarian assistance. The Latin
American foreign ministers will meet this coming Monday in El Salvador
in order to find a solution to the problem.

The National Emergency Commission (CNE) announced today that there are
982 Cubans in the six shelters, while at the border post of Peñas
Blancas, on the border with Nicaragua, 400 who did not want to move to
shelters remain.

Civil society organizations and university students have joined the
humanitarian efforts that include donations and food preparation, while
the Red Cross monitors the health of the islanders.

On the other side of the border, Nicaraguan Foreign Minister Samuel
Santos said that the expulsion of the Cuban migrants to Costa Rica was
an act of "defense" against an "imposition." "Nicaragua, which is a
fraternal people… we discussed it calmly, but with the impositions
nothing can be done, it is the obligation of every people to defend
themselves," Santos told reporters.

The foreign minister also denied that Costa Rica has asked Nicaragua to
shelter the Cubans.

The situation of Cubans on the border has further strained the already
deteriorated relations between Nicaragua and Costa Rica.

Managua accused its neighbor of "launching" the Cubans toward their
territory, causing a humanitarian crisis, while Costa Rica has rejected
those claims and says it has acted according to international law to
grant visas to migrants and prevent them falling into human trafficking

The Cubans left their country via air to Ecuador, which does not require
them to have a visa, and from there they travelled "irregularly" to
Colombia and Panama to reach Costa Rica.

On Tuesday, the Cuban government attributed this situation to the
immigration policy of the United States with regards to Cuba, and
affirmed that it is in contact with Costa Rica and Nicaragua to find a
"a quick and appropriate solution" to the problem.

According to Havana, this policy "encourages irregular emigration,"
violates the migratory accords in effect between both countries and is
"inconsistent" with the current bilateral context, in addition to
hindering the normalization of migratory relations between Cuba and the
United States and creating problems with other nations.

Costa Rica organized a meeting of foreign ministers of the countries
between Mexico and Ecuador in order to discuss joint actions, especially
the creation of a humanitarian corridor for the transit of Cuban
emigrants across America from south to north.

Source: A Thousand Cuban Migrants Stranded In Costa Rica Remain In
Shelters / 14ymedio, EFE | Translating Cuba -

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