Cubans Must Now Go to Colombia to Apply to Immigrate to the USA

October 13, 2017 |

The US Embassy in Havana will no longer issue immigrant or non-immigrant visas to the United States. Photo: Ismael Francisco/cubadebate.cu

HAVANA TIMES – As if it were a simple matter, US diplomatic sources said today that Cubans who want to immigrate to the United States, often under family reunification, will have to apply for a visa at that country’s embassy in Colombia.

“Following the suspension of visa services at the US Embassy in Havana, the State Department decided that the Embassy in Bogota, Colombia, will be responsible for dealing with requests for immigration visas for residents of Cuba,” said a statement from the US Embassy in Havana.

The decision is the result of Washington pulling out the majority of its diplomatic personnel stationed in Havana after denouncing alleged “sonic attacks” against its personnel in Cuba.

Although Washington does not blame the Cuban government for the attacks, it does hold it accountable for failing to adequately protect its diplomats on the island.

The scarce personnel that remained on the island will focus on basic diplomatic duties and consular attention to US citizens visiting Cuba.

Diplomatic sources said that so far no dates have been set for the first appointments and people who already have the steps initiated will be informed directly of the steps to follow.

“If the National Visa Center had not yet scheduled its appointment for the embassy in Havana, it will do so directly for that of Bogota,” said a statement from the US embassy in Cuba.
Thus, Cubans who want to apply for a migratory visa must travel to Colombia to do the process.

Non-migratory visas, such as business or tourism, may be requested personally in any diplomatic delegation of the United States in third countries.

The only non-migratory visas to be managed in Havana will be diplomatic, official and emergency cases for health reasons.

Under a migration agreement between the two countries, since 1994 the United States agreed to grant Cubans 20,000 annual immigrant visas, which will now be very difficult to meet due to the lack of consular staff in Havana.

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  • Joseph Marti

    “Although Washington does not blame the Cuban government for the attacks, it does hold it accountable for failing to adequately protect its diplomats on the island.”

    • Hans Frankfort

      I still believe these sonic attacks were an inside job instigated by agents from the Trump regime who goes out of its way to destroy Obama’s legacy. For Cubans who wish to emigrate or visit family in the US via third countries is ridiculous!

      • Joseph Marti

        So now you believe the attacks were not fiction?
        And if Cuba is so wonderful, and the US so evil, as you seem to believe, why would Cubans wish to emigrate?

        • Hans Frankfort

          Read my remarks carefully, Joseph! Where did you get the idea that I believed the sonic attacks were fiction; these attacks were real coming from an inside source. I never stated that Cubans live a wonderful life, but Trump makes it difficult for Cubans to leave the island even temporarily and get some reprieve abroad to visit family or emigrate. Most Cubans cannot afford to visit third countries just to get a visa. It is not the US who is evil; Trump is the one who propagate evil policies that hurt Americans as well as Cubans to make their lives miserable! The sonic attacks has to originate inside the buildings where diplomats live and work; there is no way that sonic attacks can penetrate walls and windows. If it came from an outside source, the whole neighborhood, including Cuban residents, would have been effected. Unfortunately, your bias is getting in the way at the expense of logic.

          • Ruben Alberto

            This could also be a sabatage by U.S. government, and their Spies, the same with the Cuban Spies world wide the have highly trained since the cold war, there are Soviet Cubans, Soviet Cuban Cars, and Cuban Spies, but I and a few others believe that Mr. Donald J. Trump is playing dirty imperialism, Capitalists game with the embassy and his Spies, since he is the CEO of CORPORATE AMERICA, since it has become a giant CORPORATE Monster, when they turn everything under the U.C.C. the Uniform Commercial Code, made we the people into corporate entities through their birthrights by making a birth certificate into ownership Corporate Titles, state by state with ALL CAPITAL LETTERS, and the EIN’S social security number names all CAPS, this signifies STRAWMAN, we the people became negoitable instruments. Before Mr. Trump to position we are being dragged in by the giant CORPORATE Monster. This why Cuba knows this monster very well. Another bad scenario from the Trump administration is trying to plot Cuba…

          • larrybudwiser

            Loosen the straps on your tinfoil hat, even for someone who has strong feeling for the people of Cuba, statements like that don’t help.