President Carter will allow up to 3,500 of the estimated 10,000 Cubans who have sought asylum in the Peruvian Embassy in Havana to come to the United States, the White House announced Monday. The refugees will be admitted under the authority of the Refugee Act of 1980, which will give first priority to released political prisoners; second, to members of families already in the US; and third, to those seeking political asylum.
The White House has welcomed the decision by Costa Rica to serve as a staging area for the Cuban refugees before they leave for other countries. The transfer was expected to start Monday to Costa Rica, but no planes had left at this writing.
Peru has announced it will take 1,000 Cuban refugees; Spain, 500; and Costa Rica, 300.