At the northern border in Tumbes, Peruvian armed forces significantly reduced their presence and lifted the blockade of the Panamerican Highway, a main entry and transit point. The military ceased performing border control operations which they had done since the militarization of the border in January amid an increase in irregular flows, these controls have been fully taken over by the Superintendence of Migration (SNM), in line with the advocacy efforts made by GTRM partners and Ombudsperson’s offices. Partners reported increased flexibility from authorities towards vulnerable groups crossing the border such as pregnant women and persons in need of medical attention, and recent operations focused on targeting members of human trafficking rings. Some 430 Venezuelans were reported crossing into Peru from Ecuador just on 30 March. 1 According to surveys conducted by GTRM partners, the percentage of Venezuelans traveling by foot decreased from 31 per cent in January to 26 per cent in March, while those using motor vehicles increased from 36 to 51 per cent. In Puno, between 50 (Wednesday and weekends) to 100 (Monday and Thursdays) Venezuelan refugees and migrants were crossing the border to Bolivia. Some 67 per cent of key informants surveyed mentioned being also aware of returns to Peru through Bolivia.
On 26 March, the SNM extended the pre-registration processto obtain a new stay permit (Carné de Permiso Temporal de Permanencia, or CPP) up to 7 April 2021.On the same date, it announced that some 350,000 foreigners living in Peru, mainly Venezuelans, had submitted their pre-registration so far, including over 100,000 asylum-seekers. The SNM announced that this data will be used to include foreigners living in Peru in the COVID-19 vaccination plan. GTRM partners reported during the monthly Protection Working Group meeting that the pre-registration database will not only be used for the new CPP procedure, but also for a pilot sample for the new humanitarian residency scheme, an initiative supported by the GTRM. The humanitarian residency process aims to provide the carné de extranjería (issued by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, or MFA) to over 500,000 asylum-seekers in the country, which would grant them access to the National Health Insurance system and other social protection and financial inclusion benefits. Partners also informed that some 105 persons were granted refugee status in the latest session of the Special Commission for Refugees (CEPR for its acronym in Spanish)