Statement by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Cuba

Declaration by the MFA on a complex situation that has been created in recent days as a result of more than a thousand Cuban citizens who have been arriving in Costa Rica from other countries of the region with the intention of traveling to the United States, encouraged by the Cuban Adjustment Act

By: Juventud Rebelde

Email: digital@juventudrebelde.cu

2015-11-18 | 16:37:44 EST
In recent days, a complex situation has been created, following more than a thousand Cuban citizens arriving in Costa Rica from other countries of the region with the intention of traveling to the United States.
These people have left Cuba legally to different Latin American countries, meeting all the requirements established by the Cuban immigration regulations. In attempting to reach US territory they have become victims of traffickers and criminal gangs, who unscrupulously profit from the control of the passage of these people in South America, Central America and Mexico.
The Cuban authorities have remained in constant contact with the governments of the countries involved, aiming to find a quick and appropriate solution that takes into consideration the welfare of the Cuban people.
The Ministry of Foreign Affairs wishes to emphasize that these people are victims of the politicization of the immigration issue by the Government of the United States, the Cuban Adjustment Act and, in particular, the application of the so-called policy of "wet feet–dry feet" policy, which gives Cubans a differentiated treatment, unique in the world, and to admit them immediately and automatically, regardless of the ways and means used, even if they arrive illegally in its territory.
This policy encourages illegal migration from Cuba to the United States and constitutes a violation of the letter and spirit of the migration accords in force, whereby both countries assumed the obligation to ensure a legal, safe and orderly migration.
The Ministry of Foreign Affairs claims that the US government also keeps in force the so-called "Parole Program for Cuban medical professionals", adopted in 2006, by President George W. Bush, to encourage doctors and other Cuban health personnel to leave their missions in third countries and immigrate to the United States. This is a reprehensible practice aimed at damaging the Cuban cooperation programs and depriving vital human resources from Cuba and many countries in need.
The Foreign Ministry reiterates once again that the policy of "dry feet-wet feet" and the "Program of Parole for Cuban medical professionals" are inconsistent with the current bilateral context, impeding the normalization of migratory relations between Cuba and the United States and creating problems for other countries.
The Ministry of Foreign Affairs reaffirms that the Cuban citizens who have left the country legally and comply with existing immigration legislation are entitled to return to Cuba, if they so wish.
The Ministry of Foreign Affairs reaffirms the commitment of the government of Cuba to a legal, safe and orderly migration.
Havana, November 17, 2015

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