President-elect of Panama to address migration crisis

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By LatAm Reports Staff Writers

Panama’s elected President José Raúl Mulino travels to the reception community Lajas Blancas in Darién today to address the irregular migration crisis heading to the United States.

Mulino’s stay comes just 72 hours after his inauguration as head of state for the 2024-2029 term and following the campaign announcement that he would close the vast territory bordering Colombia and begin the deportation of walkers to their countries of origin.

According to the new president, this visit aims to know first-hand the situation of these flows and illegal travelers who do not handle fully.

At noon this Friday a considerable group of migrants are expected to arrive in Lajas Blancas from where they will be transferred to Chiriquí, on the border with Costa Rica to continue their journey.

The migration crisis is one of the great challenges facing Mulino, because this transit has become not only an escape route for migrants but also for high-profile criminals who seek to evade justice.

According to a recent statement from the National Migration Service (SNM), Operation Controlled Flow recorded so far this year the passage through that jungle of 195 thousand 817 people.

Statistics specify that according to the region, 159, 263 foreigners born in South America, 19, 1,631 from Asia, 11,369 from the Antilles, five thousand 5 508 from Africa and 46 from other regions have entered by Darién.

In June alone, 25,803 people arrived, of whom 24,491 are adults and five thousand 312 are minors.

If this trend continues, the SNM and representatives of the United Nations Children’s Fund estimate that by the end of this year this figure could reach 800 thousand irregular migrants.

Last year they crossed the jungle, despite the natural dangers that put life at risk and the harassment of criminal groups more than 520 thousand travelers, 20 percent.

The issue will focus on Mulino’s talks with his American counterpart Joe Biden’s special envoy to the inauguration on Monday, Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas.

This article has been translated after first appearing in El Pais