Thursday 1 December 2022

Costa Rica will allow passage to the massive Venezuelan migratory wave

President Chaves: "We are not encouraging them to stay here, but in accordance with international commitments we are going to let them pass and help them as international law requires us on humanitarian issues"

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1 December 2022 - At The Banks - BCCR

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QCOSTARICA – Costa Rica’s immigration service, the Dirección General de Migración y Extranjería (DGME) and other institutions will implement a strategy to expedite the passage of migrants through Costa Rica who wish to continue their journey north.

Venezuelan migrants in San Jose. Photo from La Nacion

According to the DGME, an average of 2,500 people are entering the country every day, of which 80% are Venezuelans, this is mainly to the relaced immigration policies of the United States, arousing the interest of South Americans to embark on their journey north.

The figures indicate that 90% of Venezuelans stay in Costa Rica between 24 and 48 hours and then continue on their way, but there is a 10% that face economic, logistical, or health problems that force them to stay longer.

Migrants camp out in the area of the downtown San Jose bus terminal
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Many of these Venezuelans are seen in various communities in the country, in particular bus terminals and their surroundings, including San Jose, trying to collect money or receive humanitarian aid from non-governmental organizations.

Marlen Luna, Director of Immigration, warned that in recent days the amount of entries at the southern border posts has increased.

Luna indicated that there will be State assistance for these people with the help of international organizations such as the UN Refugee Agency (UNHCR).

The Government reported that the National Chamber of Transporters (CANATRANS) agreed to collaborate with some bus services that will take the migrants from their entry into the country to a point near the border with Nicaragua.

“We are not encouraging them to stay here, but in accordance with international commitments we are going to let them pass and help them as international law requires us on humanitarian issues,” Costa Rican President Rodrigo Chaves said at the weekly press conference.

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Earlier this week, the Washington Post reported the U.S. and Mexico reached agreement on plans for Venezuelan migrants, an arrangement is modeled after a program that has allowed nearly 70,000 Ukrainians to enter the United States over the past six months with a legal status known as humanitarian parole.

Migrants seeking aid in the streets of San Jose, Costa Rica

The fly in the ointment for any of Costa Rica’s plans and especially for the migrants is Nicaragua, whose government’s policies are a hit-and-miss on allowing migrants to enter their territory and continue on their journey north.

The Costa Rican government is evaluating the possibility of installing shelter in the north, near the border with Nicaragua.

 

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