HAVANA TIMES (dpa) —The foreign ministers of 11 Latin American countries will meet next Tuesday in El Salvador to discuss and try to resolve the issue of the nearly 2,000 Cubans stranded on the border between Nicaragua and Costa Rica for five days, reported dpa news on Friday.
The official Sandinista Party site el19digital said the appointment was agreed Thursday in San Salvador by the Security Commission of the Central American Integration System (SICA), consisting of Costa Rica, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras, Nicaragua, Panama and the Dominican Republic.
The foreign ministers of the seven countries will meet in San Salvador on Tuesday morning, joined by representatives of Cuba, Colombia, Ecuador and Mexico, the report said.
These last four countries have been involved in the problem, as more than 2,000 Cubans left weeks ago from Ecuador on a journey overland across Colombia, Panama and Costa Rica, hoping to reach the United States.
Six hundred more Cubans are en route, currently at the Panama-Costa Rican border.
Nicaragua closed its southern border with the arrival of the Cubans on Sunday, attacking the migrants with tear gas and rubber bullets, and accused Costa Rica of creating a “humanitarian crisis” by promoting an immigration avalanche.
The Cubans, who began their trip guided by a people trafficking ring that was dismantled in Costa Rica, now hope that Nicaragua, Honduras, El Salvador, Guatemala and Mexico will open their borders so they can pass through to reach US territory.
Costa Rican Foreign Minister Manuel Gonzalez said it is urgent to find an “integral” solution to the Cuban migration problem.
“These people come in an irregular situation under people trafficking mafias and risk their lives in deplorable conditions in transit of thousands of kilometers. As States we must fully address it,” he said.
Thursday in Lima, the secretary general of the Organization of American States (OAS), Luis Almagro, said the OAS is willing to help solve the problem if the parties so request.
“The migrants feel the time is short in the sense that depending on the political rapprochement between Cuba and the United States, change could come in some of the laws that allow a Cuban who sets foot in the United States to the right of asylum,” noted Almagro.
The US ambassador in Managua, Laura Dogu said that her country will continue to welcome those who manage to enter its territory, as established by the laws in effect for 50 years to legally benefit Cubans entering the country.