Bishops from Peru and Chile have called on the authorities of both countries to seek a solution through dialogue to the migration crisis that is currently taking place at the border. Source: CNA.
For the past two weeks, hundreds of migrants – mostly Venezuelans, but also Colombians and Haitians – have been trying to leave Chile and enter Peru because Chile has toughened its immigration policies. The foreigners claim their ultimate goal is to return to their countries of origin.
However, according to the minister of the interior of Peru, Vicente Romero, only those who present their immigration card, visa and passport are being accepted. The rest have remained on the border between the two countries, enduring the inclement weather of the desert, with some engaging in confrontations with the police.
Given the situation, the Peruvian government declared a state of emergency last week at most of its border crossings in order for the armed forces to support the police. For its part, the Chilean government ordered the militarisation of its northern border in February to prevent more migrants from illegally entering the country.
In a statement issued on Saturday, Bishop Marco Cortez of Tacna and Moquegua, Peru, and Bishop Moisés Atisha of Arica, Chile, lamented the clashes at the border and reiterated their call that with “sincere dialogue between all parties involved”, a solution could be found for migrants, including families with children and older people.
The prelates pointed out that “we all agree that the migratory phenomenon must be regulated by the pertinent authorities”, but this “is not synonymous with banning or considering such people as an evil for society”.
Bishops of Chile and Peru call for dialogue to resolve migratory crisis at border (Eduardo Berdejo, ACI Prensa via CNA)