PANAMA CITY (AP) — Two migrants died shortly after entering Panama through the jungle-covered border with Colombia, Panamanian authorities said Friday.
The National Immigration Service said in the statement that both migrants, one from Mauritania and the other from Haiti, entered Panama in early October and both died Thursday.
The Mauritanian Sall Abdulaye Mamdou, 28, was taken to a government outpost in the Darien region without vital signs. A test for COVID-19 came back positive.
The cause of death was not provided for 50-year-old Bana Saint Halaine of Haiti, who entered Panama with a group of fellow Haitians.
Panama had previously reported the deaths of two other migrants during the pandemic.
There are some 2,000 migrants in government camps in Darien and another 500 in a camp near the Costa Rica border. The majority are Haitians halted in their journey to the United States by the pandemic.
Frustration has been growing among the migrants for months because they want to resume their travel.
Panama’s migration agency has defended its actions and urged Colombian authorities to establish medical controls and security on its side of the border.