Costa Rica faces a dire situation, declaring a state of emergency as thousands of families attempt an extremely dangerous journey through the country. Their end goal? The United States.
Passing Through Costa Rica
Costa Rican President Rodrigo Chaves has declared a state of emergency in response to an alarming rise in the number of migrants passing through the country, headed towards the United States.
Speaking at a press conference, President Chaves stated, “The people that arrive are passing across Costa Rica trying to get to the United States, basically.”
The individuals crossing through Costa Rica represent a global demographic, hailing from various nations such as Venezuela, Ecuador, China, Colombia, Haiti, Yemen, and Bangladesh.
The month of August witnessed an unprecedented surge in migrant numbers, with over 84,490 people entering Costa Rica through its southern border.
Risking Their Lives
This figure marked a significant 55% increase compared to the previous month, showing just how desperate the migrants’ situations are getting in multiple countries.
Migrants embarking on this journey face the daunting Darien Gap, a treacherous route connecting Panama and Colombia. The risk is huge for them and their families, but they feel it’s worth it to better their lives.
Addressing the immediate humanitarian needs of travelers is essential, so the International Organization for Migration (IOM) issued a heartfelt plea to Central American and Mexican governments.
The IOM urged government officials to collaborate and take prompt action, arguing that the existing aid resources are “stretched thin.”
Biden Proposes Offices to Guide Their Way
The perilous journey through the Darien jungle takes a severe toll on migrants, leaving them injured, abandoned, and vulnerable to violence, robbery, and sexual abuse.
The financial strain also plagues families, resulting in hunger, homelessness, and various health issues.
But what can the US government do to help?
President Biden’s administration introduced the Safe Mobility initiative, aimed at establishing “safe mobility offices” in partnership with international organizations.
Biden’s centers would offer migrants a legal pathway to migrate to the US and other countries instead of embarking on perilous border crossings.
Safe and Legal Migration
Colombia, Costa Rica, and Guatemala are at the forefront of the Safe Mobility initiative, with over 38,000 individuals already registering.
This initiative is a crucial step toward providing a structured and safe migration process.
President Rodrigo Chaves engaged in high-level discussions with US President Joe Biden, particularly focusing on the escalating migration crisis, speaking of the urgency to find effective solutions to manage the dire situation.
Costa Rica is gearing up to open “safe mobility offices,” aligning with President Biden’s initiative.
Costa Rica’s commitment to facilitating safe and legal migration is essential, given that nearly 90,000 migrants used it as a pathway to the US in one month.
Featured Image Credit: Shutterstock / David Peinado Romero