San José, Costa Rica, since 1956

New Immigration Law Approved in First Debate

THE Legislative Assembly approveda new Immigration Law Tuesday in thefirst of two required votes. The legislationpunishes coyotes, people who transportillegal immigrants, with 2-6 years of jail,the daily La Nación reported.“The new law is directed at the migratoryinflux that enters the country in irregularways,” said Oscar Gutiérrez, assemblylegal advisor for the Social ChristianUnity Party (PUSC).The new law also regulates marriagesbetween Costa Ricans and foreignerswhose goal is to obtain residency in thecountry, the daily reported. Any foreignerwho seeks residency here because ofmarriage to a Costa Rican will have toprove he or she has lived with the CostaRican for a period of one year outside thenational territory (TT, Jan. 28).According to Gutiérrez, the law doesnot modify the requirements to apply forresidency or retirement in the country.

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