CITY OF PANAMA.
ANDn the carpet in a ready room on the Panama Metropolis airport, a Cuban household has been in limbo for nearly a month, on the verge of being despatched in opposition to their will to the island from which they migrated two years in the past, after an advanced journey to Mexico .
In room 147 of the Tocumen airport, Ilyu and Sergio and their two kids unfold blankets on the ground to eat the meals that an airline offers them.
Intently noticed by immigration officers, the García González members of the family grew to become a part of the panorama in this Central American terminal that, amid the covid-19 pandemic, exhibits a big circulation of customers.
With none privateness, they’re surrounded by their suitcases. They’ve common entry to the bogs. Migration Panama ensures them deal, they report on their networks.
Ilyu González, 35, emigrated from Cuba two years in the past along with his household and settled in Suriname. On June 11, they traveled from there to Cancun, on a visit paid for by relations they’ve in the USA.
We traveled to Mexico to spend a weekend with our household. It was our 16th wedding ceremony anniversary and it was the present that they (members of the family) gave us, however Mexico inadmissible us for being potential migrants, ”he defined.
Rejected, they needed to return to Suriname, their nation of departure. They made transit in Panama on June 12. With the covid restrictions and with the short-term suspension of flights from Panama to Suriname, they needed to wait six days and return by way of Guyana. However they have been additionally rejected there, with out additional clarification.
Again on the Panama airport, the employees of the airline that was transporting them instructed Ilyu: “We have already got your answer: you’re going to Cuba.”
The household left Cuba in 2019 after being harassed for being Jehovah’s Witnesses, they claimed. From college occasions, on account of questions of religion, they have been harassed for refusing to sing the hymn.
In Could, the US State Division cited a report from the non secular freedom advocacy group Christian Solidarity Worldwide, saying that Cuba “routinely and systematically violated freedom of faith or perception.”
Ilyu stated that her daughter was additionally struggling what she did at college. That’s the reason they went to Suriname, a rustic the place Cubans can acquire residency with out difficulties. She opened a small magnificence salon and her husband, a turner, obtained a job.
I’ve nothing in Cuba. In addition to that we have been persecuted religiously and there we can not return. We have now residence in Suriname, ”stated Ilyu.
Usually, Cubans are required increased necessities than different residents for tourism. Within the case of Mexico, and not using a particular allow, they’ll do it with an American or Schengen visa from the European Union, however there have been issues with them. “The Cubans have been in transit via Panama. Upon being inadmissible in Mexico for carrying false visas from the European Union and Italy, from there they’re returned by Guyana to our nation, ”Migración Panamá reported on June 26.
Ilyu says that Mexico by no means questioned his visa, that he solely heard that argument in Panama. Nevertheless, she doesn’t rule out having been deceived in Suriname through the course of.
To keep away from being despatched to Cuba, they requested for refuge in Panama. The Nationwide Workplace for the Consideration of Refugees denied them.
Upon studying of his case, the lawyer Gustavo Peralta, from the NGO Centro de Asistencia Authorized Standard, prolonged his assist to attraction. However he wanted an influence of lawyer to symbolize her, a doc that Ilyu couldn’t signal as a result of he can not depart the transit space of the airport.
Esther, Ilyu’s sister, needed to journey from the US – the place she resides – to Panama and produce the powers of lawyer for Ilyu to signal in the lavatory in the transit space. Then Esther gave them to the lawyer. The matter is now in court docket.
Sergio García, Ilyu’s husband, is evident: “If they permit us to return to Suriname, we’ll return to Suriname, however for Cuba we don’t wish to return. That’s our goal: for Cuba, no ”.
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