(posted Jan. 6, 5:50 p.m.)- The government of Costa Rica is reporting a larger than expected turnout of Nicaraguans requesting visas to return to Costa Rica for work after spending the Christmas holidays with family. 

More than 5,300 Nicaraguans have turned up at the Costa Rican embassies in Managua and Chinandega seeking visas in the past two work days, according to a report by Costa Rican Ambassador Javier Sancho. 

The Costa Rican government reports that it has stamped 23,080 entry visas since Dec. 11, according to a foreign ministry press release. Most of the visas have been issued to Nicaraguan emigrants returning to Costa Rica after the holidays, the Costa Rican government says. 

Ambassador Sancho said the Costa Rican embassies had prepared for the annual New Year’s spike in visa requests, but that this year’s exodus surpassed their expectations.

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