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Oct 3, 2022

Foreign Minister Courtenay Discusses Illegal Cuban Migrants in Belize

The illegal influx of Cuban migrants into the country remains a serious concern for the Government of Belize, particularly the Ministry of Immigration. A spike in the arrival of Cuban nationals has the ministries of immigration and foreign affairs working overtime to address the issue. The most recent bust took place near El Pillar at the western border with Guatemala a little over a week ago. News Five spoke with Foreign Minister Eamon Courtenay about the situation.


Eamon Courtenay

Eamon Courtenay, Minister of Foreign Affairs

“It’s a problem.  First of all, we have pending for October bilateral talks with Cuba on migration in which we are going to take a deep dive into these issues and see how we can work together on that very important issue.  Secondly, there are regional flows and we have detected trends in the way in which these migrants move and we have to work on a regional basis with the countries through which they are passing, countries through which they are passing, countries which are facilitating them to see whether we can come up with a common plan to try to stem the movement of illegal migrants, particularly the Cubans.  We had a management meeting yesterday in the Ministry of Immigration and we spent about two hours on this very topic, looking at the numbers, looking at the flows, looking at the persons in Belize who are facilitating this illegal trade.  Some recommendations have been made and a cabinet paper is being prepared to send to cabinet on this issue.  The long and short of it is that we have noted a significant increase in the number of illegal and irregular migrants coming through Belize, Cubans being a significant increase.”

Viewers please note: This Internet newscast is a verbatim transcript of our evening television newscast. Where speakers use Kriol, we attempt to faithfully reproduce the quotes using a standard spelling system.

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