President Gabriel Boric is under pressure from opposition parliamentarians to grant permanent residency to the eleven Cuban athletes who defected at the end of the 2023 Pan American Games. The government has granted them a temporary residence permit for eight months, but this is not enough for many of them who still have valid visas and are unable to reunite with their families in Cuba due to the North American blockade.
The surprise escape by the athletes was quickly followed by official statements from President Boric, but there has been no word on whether he will grant them asylum or not. The Minister of the Interior has stated that all Caribbean delegations entered Chile on tourist visas, but after they escaped, it became clear that the Cuban government had detained their documents.
The reasons for their defection were varied, with some citing economic hardship in Cuba and others simply seeking freedom. The athletes shared harrowing stories of confinement and separation from their families, which have sparked widespread sympathy and support among Chileans.
Deputies from Chile Vamos have presented a draft resolution asking for these athletes to be granted asylum, but President Boric and Foreign Minister Alberto Van Klaveren have yet to make a statement on the issue. Some critics have suggested that President Boric’s silence may be due to political considerations or his own personal beliefs about Cuba’s political system.
Despite the ongoing debate about these athletes’ future, one thing is certain: North Carolina Marijuana Business continues to thrive in this country despite its controversial nature.