Stranded Cuban Immigrant bid farewell by Costa Rica

Costa Rica on Tuesday sent away the last 91 of the 4,817 Cuban migrants who had been stranded in the country for over four months on their way to the United Sates.


The Cubans left Costa Rica on Tuesday from the Juan Santamaria International Airport and landed at Nuevo Laredo, Mexico.

They took the last of the 36 flights that have helped the migrants continue their journey towards the United States, since Nicaragua, a crucial gateway, closed its borders to Cuban migrants last November.

The border closure triggered a migration crisis, forcing Costa Rica to look for alternative diplomatic solutions. The Costa Rican government had to issue thousands of transit visas to allow them to stay.

The diplomatic efforts to resolve the issue led Central American and Mexican governments to reach an agreement at a meeting chaired by the International Organization for Migration last December, giving the stranded Cubans a safe passage north.

Costa Rican President Luis Guillermo Solis thanked the Central American and Mexican governments and acknowledged the support given to the Cubans by the Costa Rican people.

“The support given by countries in the region, added to the support given by the Costa Rican people, in particular the communities that housed the Cubans for five months, making up one of the most beautiful chapters in humanitarian aid which guaranteed an well-ordered and safe migratory operation,” said the president.

During the migration crisis, the Costa Rican government created 44 shelters across the country to house the Cubans.

As the Cuban Adjustment Act of 1966 gives Cubans temporary residency in the United States and the right to work almost immediately upon arrival, thousands of Cubans have bet on a trip to the United States.

Costa Rica still has to resolve the case of another 50 Cubans arrested for trying to enter the country illegally. The migrants will be deported to a third country that is willing to receive them. Enditem

Source: Xinhua

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