President of Costa Rica Requests Support to Assist Nicaraguan Migrants

The Italian Filippo Grandi (L), United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees, welcomes the President of Costa Rica, Carlos Alvarado Quesada (R) before the opening of the Global Refugee Forum of the United Nations High Commissioner (UNHCR).  Photo: EFE

Carlos Alvarado attended the Global Refugee Forum with a portfolio of cooperation projects to answer the requests from refugees and migrants

By Confidencial

HAVANA TIMES – The President of Costa Rica, Carlos Alvarado, participated in the Global Refugee Forum, December 17-18 in Geneva, Switzerland, with a broad portfolio of cooperation projects that will allow his country to meet the requests from refugees and migrants, including Nicaraguans, who total more than 80,000 in the last and a half year, after the political persecution of the Daniel Ortega dictatorship against the April Rebellion.

Within the framework of the Comprehensive Refugees Response event, Alvarado met with the Secretary General of the United Nations, Antonio Guterres, and Filippo Grandi, the High Commissioner for Refugees. In addition, he was a member of the high-level plenary session on shared responsibility of the Global Refugee Forum.

On Wednesday, his last day in Geneva, he held a high-level meeting on comprehensive attention to the migration flows in Costa Rica, in which he will raise the needs for international cooperation.

In the framework of the forum, Alvarado highlighted the good practices applied by Costa Rica with migrant population, mostly coming from Nicaragua.

Furthermore, he presented a series of cooperation projects to obtain funds that will allow the country to provide comprehensive care guaranteeing human rights, integration and non-discrimination.

Official exile figures in Costa Rica

A warehouse that serves as a refuge for Nicaraguans in Costa Rica.  Photo: Elmer Rivas

Costa Rica has received an extraordinary flow of migrants due to the sociopolitical crisis that Nicaragua has been experiencing since April 18, 2018.

Official data indicates that until May 2019, more than 70,000 people have been forced to flee from that country, and of them, a total of 55,500 people have requested international protection in Costa Rica.

The authorities reported that specifically the country seeks to obtain resources for legalization, protection, education, basic assistance, training and incentives for access to the labor market of this population.

Alvarado was accompanied on the trip by Foreign Minister, Manuel Ventura; the Deputy Minister of the Interior, Carlos Torres and the Direction of Migration and Foreigners, Raquel Vargas.

The Global Refugee Forum is co-sponsored by Costa Rica together with Ethiopia, Turkey, Germany and Pakistan.

Attendees of the Global Refugee Forum of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) at the European headquarters of the United Nations (UNOG) in Geneva, Switzerland, December 17, 2019. Photo: EFE

Global Refugee Forum

Former Presidents make an international call

The former presidents of Costa Rica Miguel Angel Rodriguez (1998-2002), Laura Chinchilla (2010-2014) and Luis Guillermo Solis (2014) made an urgent call last Sunday to attract international cooperation funds for the care of migrants and refugees in the country.

The petitioners’ request was disseminated in an audiovisual production prepared by SOS Human Rights Nicaragua, in support of the Costa Rican President, Carlos Alvarado’s request cooperation funds.

“Costa Rica is experiencing a humanitarian crisis, because despite the fact that the country has all the will to welcome them, the living conditions, the work needs, the study obligations of this migrant population are special and at this moment they become a burden that the State can hardly sustain,” said Solis.

The former presidents indicated that Costa Rica needs support from the international community to distribute the economic burden that migrant care represents.

In the video, the three former presidents agreed that a comprehensive and humanitarian care of the migrant and refugee population is a matter of shared responsibility among all the countries and that, in the case of Costa Rica, it is urgent to have funds to attend, particularly, the displaced or persecuted Nicaraguan population.


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