Migration Crisis

Some 3,000 people a day enter the Darién, which "is a jungle", warn authorities

Panama announces the campaign "Darien is not a road, it is a jungle" that seeks to discourage the migratory flow through the jungle, where there are rapes and disappearances.

PANAMA CITY-In view of the increase in the irregular migratory flow of people using the Darien jungle to reach the U.S. border, the Panamanian government announced an international media campaign called "Darien is not a route, it is a jungle".

Panamanian Security Minister Juan Manuel Pino explained to the media the high impact of irregular migration through the Darien jungle.

"Despite all the efforts, the meetings with the countries involved, it has not been possible to achieve a stop," said the minister. Currently between 2,500 and 3,000 people enter every day, it is a situation that has overwhelmed us. "Panama has handled the situation responsibly and humanely" said Minister Pino, who added that more than 60 million dollars have been spent in the attention of all those people who enter irregularly.

Part of the strategy is the media campaign "Darien is not a road, it is a jungle", which seeks to discourage the flow of irregular migrants through the Darien by showing the reality faced by those who undertake this dangerous journey.

Devastated natural lung
He added that Darién is a natural lung that is being devastated and there is already a serious environmental problem. Darien National Park is the largest natural park in all of Central America, extending beyond the border with Colombia.

The park was declared a "World Heritage Site" and recognized as a Biosphere Reserve, which obliges us as a country to maintain important criteria regarding the protection and integrity of the site and the protection of water resources, among other commitments.

The Minister of Security announced that next week 6 ministries will be visiting the area to make decisions. For her part, the director of the National Migration Service (SNM), Samira Gozaine, commented that the number of children being cared for in the shelters is worrisome. She added that there is nothing "humanitarian" in allowing this irregular flow of human beings where women, children and men are being raped, robbed and raped, "we have been left alone" said Gozaine.

Gozaine explained that in 2016 the passage of 25,407 irregular migrants was reported and for this year more than 308,000 people have already moved through Darien with a projection that may reach half a million people.

Meanwhile, the director of the National Border Service (Senafront), Jorge Gobea, explained that the level of affectation to the rivers is impressive, "60 thousand tons of garbage have been collected from the place, the rivers are contaminated by garbage and human waste" said Govea. He added that the lives of the indigenous residents are being affected, in terms of health, food security and safety, mainly in the communities of Bajo Chiquito and Membrillo.

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