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Brazilian city admits 500 more illegal Haitian immigrants

(Xinhua)

13:52, January 03, 2012

RIO DE JANEIRO, Jan. 2 (Xinhua) -- The northwestern Brazilian city of Brasileia in Acre State reported Monday that it allowed in 500 more illegal Haitian immigrants during the final 48 hours of 2011.

The arrival coincided with rumors that Brazil was mulling a limit on the number of Haitians who were crossing the Amazonian borders to the South American nation in the new year.

Acre Justice and Human Rights Assistant Minister Jose Henrique Corinto told reporters that the 500 Haitians joined the 700 that already lived in a temporary shelter in the Amazonian city with food and water supplied by state government.

He said Brasileia would be the first destination for Haitian immigrants in Brazil, followed by Sao Paulo, Porto Velho and Manaus.

In 2010, Brazil granted 475 visas to Haitians on humanitarian grounds but had to face an increasing influx of illegal immigrants in 2011. It was estimated that at least 2,300 Haitians entered Acre last year.

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