Nicaraguan teacher arrested for helping Congolese immigrant

(AP)
(AP)

Managua - Police announced Tuesday that they had arrested a schoolteacher earlier this month for allegedly aiding a migrant from the African nation of Congo to cross the border along with her 10-month-old baby girl.

Assistant national police director Francisco Diaz said teacher Nilamar Aleman was detained August 13 after giving the Congolese woman a false identity card.

Dozens of protesters turned out in the border town of San Juan del Sur to march in support of Aleman, saying she was only trying to help the woman. "Helping someone who is looking for a better life is not a crime!" read one of the placards carried by supporters.

Luis Miguel Olivares, one of the organisers of the march, noted the migrants "are not coming to stay in Nicaragua, they just want to pass through". He suggested that Haitian migrants might be mixed among those previously assumed to be from Africa.

Hundreds of migrants, many apparently from Africa, have been stuck in neighboring Costa Rica since Nicaragua closed its borders to people without required travel documents in March.

Earlier this month, the bodies of eight people believed to be migrants from Africa were found drowned in a waterway close to the border between Nicaragua and Costa Rica, suggesting they may have lost their lives trying to avoid border enforcement.

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