Costa Rica proposes a migrant ‘corridor’
Tensions rise as Cubans are pushed back by Nicaragua
Central ameriCa Costa Rica on Tuesday proposed the creation of a “humanitarian corridor” for Cuban migrants transiting Central America en route to the United States as their numbers swell at its northern border with Nicaragua.
Foreign Minister Manuel Gonzalez said in a radio interview that there must be a co-ordinated solution for the Cubans, who are currently being blocked by Nicaraguan soldiers from entering the country.
“We have nearly 2,000 people at the border,” Gonzalez said. “We have to do something with them, give them a solution. They want to continue. Even though a government sends the army after a peaceful migrant population, they are going to find a way to go.”
Nicaraguan troops forcefully pushed the Cubans back into Costa Rica on Sunday.
Dagoberto Fernandez, a Cuban mechanic travelling with his pregnant wife, said they began their journey from Ecuador and had no problems until now.
“Everyone that we have encountered since leaving Ecuador is behaving well. The problem began upon arriving at the border with Nicaragua,” Fernandez said.
“We don’t want to stay. We don’t want problems,” he said. “We’re a group of human beings trying to achieve their dream: arrive in the United States.”
Costa Rica announced Friday that it was issuing special sevenday transit visas for Cuban migrants. The proposed humanitarian corridor would seek to protect their rights as they travel north.