The ‘forgotten’ migrant crisis at Panama-Colombia border – BBC News

this is the darian gap one of the most dangerous and remote forests in the world on the border between colombia and panama here you'll find glimpses of paradise amongst the wilderness on the colombian side the region has been controlled by guerrilla and paramilitary groups who profit from extortion smuggling and drug trafficking recently this border has seen another type of crisis thousands of migrants from all over the world awaiting their chance to cross the jungle they come from haiti venezuela cuba but also many countries of africa are from cuba they're trying to get to the us like then thousands of migrants pass through here every year despite the risks it entails that's how many of these immigrants feel it's impossible to know how many cross each year or how many die on root now with the pandemic the border between colombia and panama is closed there's no sign of humanitarian or state organizations here so the future of these people completely depends on those who can cash in by helping them cross illegally for at least 15 years migrants have been departing from this beach onto the darien where they cross the border to panama they don't have access to a room to water to a toilet here travel from all over south america to these two cities from here it's a two to seven hour boat ride and then up to 20 days of trekking through dense jungle towards north america so here at the other side of the gulf is where the migrants start their journey onto the darien and they come in a tourist boat which is the same that we came in but they are charged three times the price and then the police is there and there are locals that host them through the jungle in the jungle they're led by coyotes like this man with the red cap he's telling them when to start the journey these two young men on motorbike shout at them to hurry up and this is the last sort of piece of civilization that the immigrants are going to see for at least a week now they're going to the darian jungle the coyotes seem to be controlled by the so-called clan del golfo one of the most powerful armed groups in the country with around 3 000 soldiers but the army captain tells me illegal migration isn't the only thing they're keeping taps on just a few days before we met they rescued a dinghy with people on board including children in cemeteries like this one it is increasingly common to see graves of those who drowned while trying to cross the darien [Music] estate this journey can be deadly but hundreds of people embark on it every day they feel that the risk is worth it vit means they might reach the us and start a new life you

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