When the first 500 Cuban refugees from the Peruvian Embassy in Havanna arrive here, possibly Tuesday, they will be taken to a 69-acre park near the center of Lima where the Peruvian Red Cross will receive them.
News services reported late Monday night that the schedule airlift of the Cubans may be delayed by a disagreement between Cuba and Peru on who should be allowed to leave first.
[Sources in Lima said Cuba has rejected a list that gave preference to the sick, elderly and members of family groups. The Cubans reportedly want to give reference to about 800 refugees who accepted offers of safe conduct to leave the Peruvian Embassy and have waited in their homes since the initial rush for asylum.]
More than 100 Red Cross volunteers have set up 80 tents in the park -- 70 of them for sleeping and 10 of them for cooking and storing food.
For the past 10 days, estimated 10,000 Cubans have been camping in Peru's Havana embassy. Peruvian Red Cross workers said that after the initial 500 refugees arrive, each of them will be thoroughly examined by Peruvian physicians. Psychologists will also be available if needed.
It was not clear exactly how the Peruvian government plans to go about permanently resettling the Cubans in a country where decent housing is in short supply and where as much as 40 percent of the work force is either underemployed or without jobs althogether.
Peru has said it will resettle 1,000 of the Cubans who streamed into its "TEXT OMMITTED FROM SOURCE" a double-decker ferryboat capsized off officials here are dreading the refugees' arrival because it is expected that many of those brought to Lima will eventually apply for visas to join family and friends in the United States.