Press release November 19, 2015
No Clear End to Cuban Migration Crisis
Nicaragua’s government should stop its repression of migrants, as countries in the region urgently need to cooperate to find a solution to this humanitarian crisis.
In response a growing number of Cuban migrants passing from through Ecuador and Central America, which has strained diplomatic relations between Costa Rica and Nicaragua and led to Nicaraguan authorities using force against more than 1,500 Cuban migrants, Freedom House issued the followed statement:
“Nicaragua’s government should stop its repression of migrants, as countries in the region urgently need to cooperate to find a solution to this humanitarian crisis,” said Carlos Ponce, director of Latin American and Caribbean programs. “Central American countries and the United States need to respect migrant’s human rights.”
Costa Rica’s temporary closure of its border with Panama led hundreds of Cubans to try to enter Nicaragua, in hope of eventually reaching the United States. Nicaragua responded by closing its border with Costa Rica, claiming its neighbor had sparked a humanitarian crisis. The standoff is a by-product a growing exodus of Cubans fleeing the island.
The U.S-Cuba rapprochement has led to concern that Cubans arriving to the United States will soon no longer be able to seek asylum under the U.S. Cuban Adjustment Act. Close to 30,000 Cuban migrants have crossed the U.S.-Mexico border this year.