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Honduras: Situation Report Nº 4 - Migratory Situation

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Action Against Hunger
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Honduras has become a transit territory for migrants coming from other continents and/or mainly from South America or the Caribbean, who decide to venture on a migratory route that exposes them to numerous risks along their journey north. According to the National Migration Institute (INM), between January 1 and August 25, 2022, the irregular entry of 84,762 people was registered.

Of the total number of people reported by the INM, 83,623 entered through unauthorized points in Danlí (40,100) and Trojes (25,474), better known as blind spots, located in the border department of El Paraíso, in the south of the country. Similarly, some 18,049 people entered through Choluteca, department of the same name. Of the total number of irregular migrants, 28% are women, 55% are men and 17% are children.

INM statistics show that the largest number of irregular migrants who entered between August 1 and 25 came from Venezuela (8,588), Cuba (5,839), Ecuador (1,304) and Haiti (683), followed by India (336), Colombia (246), Dominican Republic (221), Nepal (190), Bangladesh (143) and Brazil (112).

Between August 1 and 25, 18,592 migrants entered irregularly through Danlí, Trojes and Choluteca, an average of 978 people per day, who must be managed through three overflowing immigration offices. If this trend continues in the remainder of 2022, the number of people in irregular transit through Honduras could exceed half a million.

To enter Honduras regularly, nationals from Caribbean, South American, African or Asian countries require a previously processed consular visa, which is beyond the reach or knowledge of most irregular migrants arriving in Honduras. Faced with this impediment, they resort to the service of Nicaraguan or Honduran intermediaries or “coyotes” who take them through the so-called blind spots.
Because they enter the country in violation of immigration regulations, they are subject to a fine of approximately US$236, although there is the possibility of not paying it in those cases where it can be demonstrated that they do not have the resources to do so.

Given the accumulation of people in this situation of legal insecurity and inability to pay, last August 3, the legislative decree that exempts the payment of the administrative fine to migrants who enter Honduras irregularly came into force. Despite this, there continue to be reports of illegal charges.

However, the amnesty benefited thousands of migrants who were placed in a situation of greater vulnerability, especially those traveling in extremely precarious economic conditions, which forced them to initiate a procedure with the INM to demonstrate their vulnerability and thus be exempted from payment of the fine, even if this meant remaining in the country for a longer period of time until the Honduran institutions resolved the case.

In this context, humanitarian aid actions aimed at the migrant population in transit entering through the southern border of Honduras acquire enormous importance, as they contribute to cover basic needs, including protection risks during their migratory route through Honduran lands.