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Discussion of Cuban migrant crisis to resume Tuesday in Mexico

December 21, 2015

Costa Rican officials on Tuesday will attend a regional meeting in Mexico to discuss the crisis of more than 6,000 Cuban migrants stranded since November in the country near the border with Nicaragua.

The meeting originally was scheduled to be held Monday in El Salvador, the Foreign Ministry reported.

Immigration Administration Director Kathya Rodríguez will represent Costa Rica, along with officials from the Foreign Ministry. The meeting was convened by representatives of the Central American Integration System (SICA) with the aim of reaching a regional solution to the crisis.

President Luis Guillermo Solís last Friday announced that Costa Rica will suspend its political participation in SICA, a regional body created to resolve disputes between member states.

Solís lamented the lack of support from Nicaragua and other Central American countries in allowing the passage to the U.S. of more than 6,000 Cuban migrants currently stranded near the country’s border with Nicaragua, where the government of Daniel Ortega posted soldiers and police to ensure none would enter its territory.

Another group of about 2,000 Cubans are stranded at Costa Rica’s border with Panama waiting for a temporary visa that will allow them continue their journey to the U.S.

Solís on Saturday said this group would be the last to receive a visa and that any other Cuban found inside Costa Rican territory without a valid immigration status would be deported to the island.

The Cuban migrant crisis began on Nov. 15 when Nicaragua closed its border to the Cubans citing “risks to its national security and sovereignty.” Nicaraguan officials also accused Costa Rica of manipulating the situation “to legitimize U.S. migration policies.”

Read more stories on the Cuban migrants here

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