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June 2nd, 2014 (InsideCostaRica.com) Yorvanky Perez de Piña, a Cuban man who had been living in the Juan Santamaria International Airport since his arrival on April 24th, was deported back to his native country on Friday morning, according to his Costa Rican wife, Yorleny Marin.
His lawyer, Eduardo Flores said that Costa Rica is a country of double standards.
“Here we have double standards. [Perez] was demonized for being Cuban. The fear was that if he entered the country, all the Cubans would come,” Flores said. “… Where was international humanitarian law and the Refugee Convention?”
Perez’s flight back to Cuba departed around 7 a.m. on Friday morning.
Perez’s deportation comes after the man spent more than one month living in the airport. At least three separate asylum requests and an appeal by his wife to President Luis Guillermo Solís all failed to win his re-entry as a refugee.
Perez had previously been living in Costa Rica since early 2012. He had traveled to Cuba and spent six months caring for his ill mother, according to Perez, but was refused re-entry to Costa Rica after returning from the trip on April 24th.
Perez had a provisional refugee ID card and a work permit but both were expired, his lawyer said, adding that Perez had never requested permanent residence despite the fact that he has been married to a Costa Rican woman since April 2012.
In April, the couple’s lawyer filed a writ of habeas corpus aimed at getting his client released, after which the constitutional court ordered authorities to provide Perez with food and facilities for his personal hygiene while at the airport and to not deport him while the matter is being resolved.
Immigration authorities refused Perez’s asylum request for the third time on May 13th.
Perez had claimed that his life would be in danger if returned to his native Cuba.
His wife said her husband plans to work with the Costa Rican consulate in Cuba after his return in order to process the necessary paperwork to obtain a Costa Rican visa.