Brazil calls emergency meeting to address massive influx of illegal immigrants
The Brazilian government called this week an emergency meeting to discuss measures to curb the influx of hundreds of illegal immigrants along its northern border.
Counter-measures have not come from the meeting yet, which included the ministers of Justice, Foreign Affairs, Labour and Social Development. The heads the presidency’s Civil House and Brazil’s Federal Police also attended.
Earlier, the Acre state, the most affected by immigrants, declared a “social emergency” to get the government to help stem the tide of immigrants and allocate funds to aid those already in Brazil.
State officials say there is not enough space or water to meet the refugees’ needs, and authorities fear the conditions could lead to a health crisis.
Nilson Moura, justice and human rights secretary of Acre, said that more than a thousand migrants have entered the state in the past few days alone, from Haiti, the Dominican Republic, Bangladesh and Senegal.
More than 4,000 migrants have arrived in Acre since a devastating 2010 earthquake caused thousands of Haitians to migrate, the state government said.
Brazilian authorities last year tried to discourage immigration by outlining new regulations that restricted the number of visas granted monthly to Haitians to 100.