Syrians, Palestinians and other Arab nationals are buying Honduran identities and passports that make them eligible to enter the United States on tourist visas, opening a whole new door to potential terrorists and refugees seeking easy passage to America, says to a new report.
According to the Honduran newspaper La Prensa, the country's National Registry of Persons confirmed the fraudulent registration of hundreds of Palestinians, Syrians and others.
"As a result, these foreigners can then acquire Honduran passports, which can be used to apply for visas to enter to the United States," said the Center for Immigration Studies.
The report comes amid others showing how Cubans and others are using Central American nations to filter into the United States, legally and illegally. Honduras is one of the three countries in the region supplying tens of thousands of unaccompanied minors flooding the U.S. border with Mexico.
President Obama has vowed to bring in thousands of Syrians, but it has been delayed in part by the vetting of their backgrounds.
In the case of Honduras, the Syrians and Palestinians buy Honduran citizenship documents, sometimes claiming the identity of the dead.
Given a new identity, some have gone to the U.S. embassy to get a tourist visa, but have been turned away after a quick vetting. Unknown is how many have received one, according to the analysis by Kausha Luna of CIS.
She said that the case identified by La Prensa is case "is only the tip of the iceberg of an organized crime network with international ties to smugglers and [Honduran] officials, who were able to illegally register at least one hundred Palestinians and Syrians with fraudulent documentation. The smuggling network operates by falsifying birth certificates on Hondurans who have not gotten their identity card or people now deceased."
Read the full report here.
Paul Bedard, the Washington Examiner's "Washington Secrets" columnist, can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org