The Safe Mobility Offices plan with which the United States serves people from the region who are trying to reach their country has already had an impact on more than 1,300 migrants who were in Costa Rica.
The project consists of including people of various nationalities within US immigration programs according to their profile. Its branches operate in Costa Rica, Colombia and Guatemala, where they receive requests to identify possible avenues of care.
In the San José office, for example, only files from Nicaraguans and Venezuelans are handled. These may be in transit or already have shelter locally, but the United States could still give them ways to.
They are the following:
• Shelter programs
• Temporary stay visas
• Delimited employment permits
• Family reunification plans
The Deputy Undersecretary of State of the Office of Population, Refugees and Migration, Marta Youth, pointed out that there are nearly 4,500 applications that have arrived. Of them, about 1 in 3 are having a positive result. The Commander of the Southern Command, General Laura Richardson, touched on the issue of migration during her visit to Costa Rica and it is expected to be one of the central topics of President Rodrigo Chaves‘ visit to Washington (Presidency)
More help for Costa Rica
In previous days, Undersecretary Youth explained in a Press Conference other strategies that the United States is also taking to help countries impacted by the wave of migration that hits Latin America. She highlighted that many times migrants do not want to leave for a long time. Given this, they try to help recipient countries such as Costa Rica, Panama or Colombia so that their institutions can meet the demand.
Regarding the Costa Rican case, she indicated that direct assistance is given and through UN agencies. These include the International Organization for Migration (IOM), the High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) and the Children’s Fund (UNICEF). According to the spokesperson, last year alone assistance climbed to more than US$21 million. The Government has repeatedly pointed out the need for more international cooperation to address the migratory flows that are arriving in Costa Rica (Presidency)
Some bad projections
Despite the assistance it is giving to the region, the United States commented this Thursday that it is raising alarms due to the number of migrants it is expecting this season. It is even noted that movements in the Darién Jungle are reaching historic levels.
A striking element, as she explained, is the abuse of “fake news” that migrants are falling into. “Alert people to look for those official sources and not believe what they receive on WhatsApp”, she said.
Warning that irregular migration paths are taken by cartels that leave people in the most diverse risks. “Not only are they charging, but they also take advantage of it to exploit and extort people”, she mentioned.