Six Cuban nationals are stuck at the airport of Colombia’s capital Bogota after they unsuccessfully filed a request for political asylum and subsequently refused to return to their Communist homeland.
The six are currently staying at the transfer terminal of Bogota’s El Dorado airport while authorities determine what to do with the stranded Cubans. According to the asylum seekers, they have not been offered food since their arrival.
According to Colombia’s Foreign Ministry, the six Cubans were part of a group of 11 that had been deported back to Havana by neighbor Ecuador. During a transfer in Bogota, the self-proclaimed political refugees refused to board the plane that was meant to take them home on January 1.
Since then, the Cubans haven’t been able to leave the terminal.
“The situation is precarious. There are no conditions to eat or sleep. We haven’t had a bath in the week we’ve been here and we eat what we find in the trash,” one of the Cubans, Jay Barros, told national television network Caracol.
The foreign ministry said that it can not grant the asylum request as the Cubans failed to go through customs which means they legally haven’t entered Colombia. Consequently, airline Avianca is responsible for returning the Cubans to Ecuador.
- Comunicado del Ministerio de Relaciones Exteriores sobre los nacionales cubanos que se encuentran en el Aeropuerto El Dorado de Bogotá (Foreign Ministry)
- Seis cubanos se niegan a irse de Eldorado y regresar a la Isla (El Heraldo)
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