Havana, March 30 (RHC)-- The US State Department announced that beginning April 1, Cubans seeking immigrant visas will have to travel to Guyana to get them from the US Embassy in Georgetown.
Due to a unilateral decision by Washington, work at the US consular section in Havana has practically been paralyzed, offering only emergency services since September of last year.
The US government justified the drastic cut of its Embassy staff in Havana pointing to alleged acoustic incidents involving US diplomats, although they have admitted that no evidence or scientific proof have been found after months of investigations.
Starting in January of this year, Cubans seeking US visas had to travel to Bogota, Colombia, for a process that was slow in flow.
Cubans had to additionally obtain a Colombian visa and make travel and lodging arrangements, which rendered the procedure costly for applicants.
The unilateral decision taken by the US State Department imposes “financial punishment on tens of thousands of Cubans, and brings anguish and insecurity in their relationship with their relatives and close friends” in the US, the Director General for United States in the Cuban Foreign Ministry, Carlos Fernández de Cossío, stated recently.
The Cuban diplomat blamed the United States government for the "humanitarian cost" of these actions and said that they had a particular impact on tens of thousands of Cubans who are now forced to spend additional money by having to travel to third countries in search for temporary or immigrant US visas.
The migratory agreements in force between the US and Cuba establish the commitment by the US to grant no less than 20,000 visas annually for Cuban migrants.
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