Tegucigalpa, Honduras.- Following the official announcement made by Costa Rica in the past few hours about requiring a consular visa for Hondurans who wish to enter its territory, the Honduran Ministry of Foreign Affairs authorities have warned against implementing the order. “Complete reciprocity.”
Foreign Minister Enrique Reyna said, via his Twitter account, “If progress cannot be achieved, Honduras will apply the principle of full reciprocity.” But what does reciprocity consist of?
This means that Honduras can take similar measures regarding Costa Rican citizens wishing to enter Honduras.
These measures could include imposing visa requirements, entry restrictions, or other restrictions, depending on how Costa Rica treats Honduran citizens, in accordance with international conventions and conventions.
The principle of reciprocity, in relation to international relations with other states, refers to the guarantees, benefits and penalties granted by a state to citizens of another state or its legal entities which must be compensated in the same way, in simpler words, applying the procedure in two ways.
If Costa Rica announces a change in visa policies or travel restrictions affecting Honduran citizens, Honduras may apply the measure. The principle of reciprocity In response, as is happening today.
Aside from visa issues for entry of citizens, reciprocity is commonly used in reducing or eliminating tariffs, granting copyrights to foreigners, mutual recognition and enforcement of judicial rulings, release of restrictions, and extradition agreements, among others.
Likewise, it also applies to the establishment of diplomatic missions between the two countries and to the heads of their respective missions: ambassadors, consuls and other positions.
It is important to stress that the application of the principle of reciprocity in visa matters must be done carefully and in accordance at all times with international law and respect for contractual agreements.
Honduras and Costa Rica have bilateral agreements and treaties, part of the Central American Integration System, that govern their policies, so changes must be made taking these agreements and applicable international laws into account.
Response of the Honduran Ministry of Foreign Affairs
According to the State Department’s response, the request for visas for Hondurans was made “without prior notice and without a transition and adjustment period.”
Therefore, they assert that they impede “the flows of people that should exist in sister countries that should promote integration and unity in Central America.”
They also stressed that if this procedure does not change, “the necessary steps will be taken to apply the same procedure for consular visas to Costa Rican citizens traveling to Honduras,” taking advantage of the principle of full reciprocity.
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