Cuban migrants are inundating Mexico and southern Texas in order to obtain asylum, an indication that Cubans still desire to flee their country after Havana’s normalization of relations with the United States.
Nearly 30,000 Cubans sought asylum in Texas during a one-year period that ended in September, an increase of 80 percent from the previous year, the Wall Street Journal reported on Monday. The migrants fear that, as part of the rapprochement between Washington and Havana, U.S. lawmakers and the Obama administration will soon end a longstanding policy—known as the dry foot provision—that offers Cubans a fast track process to securing legal residency and a green card if they enter the United States by land.
Mexican immigration officials have also reported a surge in Cuban migrants compared with last year. While hundreds of Cubans still attempt to reach South Florida by sea, and are often detained and deported by the U.S. Coast Guard, more and more Cubans are traveling hundreds of miles on land through South and Central America to ender the United States under the dry foot provision.
Cubans, who typically begin their attempts in Ecuador and then hop boats, planes, and buses through Central America and Mexico, say that they endure abuses by officials and are forced to pay several bribes along their journey to the United States. Despite the impoverished conditions in many countries along the migrant route, one Cuban engineer told the Journal that, “we have seen many more luxuries than we ever did in Cuba.”
“I don’t need to be rich,” said the migrant engineer who plans to live with his wife in Miami. “I want to live free and feed my family, that is all. In Cuba it’s impossible to aspire to anything.”
Full article: Cubans Surge Into Mexico, Southern United States (Washington Free Beacon)