Tuesday, May 31, 2016

Colombia Repatriates Undocumented Cuban Couple Who Arrived From Ecuador

Colombia Repatriates Undocumented Cuban Couple Who Arrived From Ecuador
/ 14ymedio, Mario Penton

14ymedio, Mario Penton, Miami, 29 May 2016 – A Cuban couple who arrived
from Ecuador, were repatriated to the island by the Colombian
authorities this Sunday, after being detained in the center of the
country without proper documentation.

Leira Valle Piedra and Yoandy Boza Canal, ages 19 and 23 respectively,
entered Colombia through its border with Ecuador with the intention of
joining the Cubans who are in the town of Turbo, in Antioquia
Department, but they were discovered two hours from Medellin and
transferred to Pereira, where they were informed they would be returned
to Cuba.

"They told us it will be the same for all Cubans who are in Colombia
without a visa," Leira Valle told 14ymedio. She said that they decided
to cross into Colombia with the aim of continuing the journey to the
United States, where they have family. "They refused to renew my
husband's visa in Ecuador so we had to leave there," she said.

The deportation to Cuba happened after Colombia Migration issued a
statement on 25 May in which it expressed that the new measures that the
country was taking in the face of human trafficking are beginning to
show good results.

The new actions consist of an increase in checkpoints both along
highways and at border points. The authorities referred to the new
irregular migration routes they detected in the departments of Nariño,
Huila and Amazonas.

The communiqué also said that more than 150 migrants were deported in
recent days to their countries of origin or to the location where they
had entered Colombia.

With regards to hundreds of Cubans who are being housed in a warehouse
in Turbo the text was categorical: "Colombia Migration and the National
Government will not facilitate any aircraft to transport them to a
different place that is not the border where they entered Colombia or
their place of origin. To do otherwise would be contributing to the
criminal bands of human traffickers.

In 2016 alone, the town of Turbo has discovered more then 3,700
irregular migrants. Most of them obtained a safe conduct giving them 10
days to pass through the country but, after the closing of the border
with Panama to the avalanche of Cubans and migrants from other
continents, the Colombian government has decided to deport the
undocumented to their countries in origin.

In response to the request for information on the case, the
communications office of Migration Colombia told this newspaper that,
due to the internal policies that manage the institution, they can not
address the issue only from the Cuban problem, "every time, for the
Colombian state these people are victims of migrant trafficking networks
and we would be 'revictimizing' them."

Source: Colombia Repatriates Undocumented Cuban Couple Who Arrived From
Ecuador / 14ymedio, Mario Penton – Translating Cuba -

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