Migrants from Mexico lead arrests in the US

For the third year, arrests of Mexican migrants exceeded those of foreigners who make up the so-called Northern Triangle (Guatemala, El Salvador and Honduras), when comparing the periods from January to May.

In the first five months of this year, the largest apprehensions of migrants made by agents of the Customs and United States Border Protection (CBP, for its acronym in English) were from nationals: 379 thousand 206, followed by Guatemalans, with 94 thousand 706; Hondurans, 77,505, and Salvadorans, 38,665, which together add up to 210,876.

According to specialists on migration issues consulted by EL UNIVERSAL, violence, the lack of job opportunities in the country and the economic crisis continue to push a greater number of Mexicans to seek refuge in USA, and they foresee that 2022 will close with the highest number of arrests of nationals in the last four years, by US agents.

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Only last May, Mexican migrants led the list of arrests by CBP elements, with 76,837, followed by Guatemalans, with 21,382; Hondurans, 19,491, and Salvadorans, 8,895.

The former commissioner of the National Migration Institute (INM) Tonatiuh Guillen Lopez, explains that between May and June 2020, an inertia of relative stability that had been maintained in the flow of Mexicans to the United States for more than 12 years was broken.

“What we are seeing is a consequence of the economic crisis. And it is that the population returned to look for the traditional way out that we have had to find family income, which has been migration to the United States. Since then, the flow has been steadily rising,” he comments.

The former official assures that two years ago “we were around 20,000 monthly records that the border police had and more than 80,000 were shot in recent months. So, we grew by four times the flow and with this we easily surpassed any country in Central America and other nations”.

He further maintains that, despite the border wall and Title 42, which allows the US government to expel irregular migrants, “the need for people to seek alternatives is much stronger, and the result is that we will see record breaking month after month. The size of the mobility of people from Mexico is impressive. It is an escalation without precedent”.

For Guillen Lopez, It is evident that the curve of Mexicans will continue to rise, since he affirms that in the country “there is a serious problem for family income. And also another new phenomenon in Mexico is that the internally displaced persons joined the flow towards the United States. In other words, our crisis of violence and insecurity has led to residents of Guerrero, Michoacán, Oaxaca, Zacatecas, Veracruz, Guanajuato and Chiapas seeking refuge in the neighboring country.”


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It also highlights that the federal government is not doing anything to contain the migratory flow of Mexicans, because it is an issue that it ignores.

The director of the Jesuit Refugee Service Mexico, Mr. priest Conrad Zapata, He comments that in previous years it was single men of productive age who tried to enter the US, but now they are complete families.

“Now what draws a lot of attention is that it is no longer men who intend to cross the border line. The profile of those seeking to enter the United States irregularly were young men of productive age. Not today, they are complete families, so they are extremely vulnerable. It is not the same for a man to go and try to cross the border as for him to take his wife and children. That puts women and older children at great risk and traumatizes,” he says.

Avelino Meza, secretary of Fuerza Migrante, an organization based in New York, United States, stresses that the NGO he heads is pressuring the Mexican government, headed by the president Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador managed to get work visas for six months for Mexicans. “We have been working both in the US and in Mexico so that the Biden government facilitates work visas, to prevent more Mexicans from being detained.”

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