COSTA RICA NEWS – The situation at the Costa Rica/Nicaragua border is worsening. Costa Ricans are afraid to be poorly treated by the Nicaraguan law enforcement agents.
Costa Ricans are usually allowed to pass along the San Juan river, a fair distance east of the main Peñas Blancas main land border crossing, without trouble, but not as of lately.
Depending on the attitude of the guards, according to witnesses, people can be stopped and even detained. When they ask for an explanation, they are threatened with being put in jail. In June, nine farm cooperative members were detained while on their way to a farm site. For the first time ever, they were asked to present a work permit.
Then in July, at the same point along the border, two people who cross everyday to deliver goods were detained without reason. Just a week and a half after that, six members of the Environmental Administrative Tribunal were also taken into custody. They had entered into Nicaragua by mistake, due to a problem with their GPS.
Even those who live along the border complain of the tightening controls.
One man said, “I’m afraid to even approach the guards, because at any moment they can capture me and tell me I violated the sovereignty of their country.” The border is largely unmarked, and the few marks that exist are primarily covered in weeds.
In one place there is a stone path between the countries and nothing at all to indicate where one country stops and the other begins.
Article by COSTA RICAN TIMES, edited by QCostarica. Reposted with permission.