(CNN)– President Joe Biden’s administration announced on Wednesday that early next year, the US embassy in Havana, Cuba, will resume full processing of immigrant visas for the first time since 2017, as border officials look at Cuba’s growing threat to the southern border. Facing numbers. Of America.
The measure is part of a concerted effort to expand the legal avenues in the United States, which was developed into the Los Angeles Declaration on Migration and Protection during the Americas Summit last June.
The US Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) will also increase staff numbers in Havana to process cases and conduct interviews as part of the Cuban Family Reunification Parole Program. The measure, which was reintroduced in August, allows certain eligible US citizens and lawful permanent residents to apply for parole for their families in Cuba to be reunited in the US.
“These efforts are an important step in fulfilling the US commitment in the US-Cuban Migration Agreements, which seek to ensure that the total legal migration from Cuba to the United States is at least 20,000 Cubans each year, not just US citizens. Including immediate family members. The State Department is continuing to evaluate further expansion of visa services in Havana, as the conditions permit, the administration said in a statement on Wednesday.
immigration at the border
Cubans have traveled to South Florida along the US-Mexico border in increasing numbers over the past year. In August, the US Customs and Border Protection (CBP) office detained more than 19,000 Cuban immigrants at the border, up from 4,496 in August last year, according to the latest data available.
Strained relations with countries such as Cuba and Venezuela prevent the US from removing people from its territory, posing a major challenge to the administration.
“The failed communist regimes in Venezuela, Nicaragua and Cuba are driving a new wave of migration across the Western Hemisphere, including the recent increase in encounters along the southwestern border of the United States,” CBP Commissioner Chris Magnus said in a statement. ” earlier this week.