Mexico: At least 53 migrants killed in a truck accident

One hundred people were crammed into the vehicle would have overturned after hitting a wall. Most are from Guatemala.

Le Monde with AFP

This is another terrible tragedy of illegal immigration to Mexico, a country more than ever caught in migratory pressure from its southern neighbors and firmness of the United States: a truck accident caused the death of at least 53 undocumented migrants, Thursday, December 9. Forty people were also injured, three seriously very in this accident near Tuxtla Gutierrez, capital of Chiapas border of Guatemala, southeast Mexico, according to a report from the local prosecutor.

The migrants were crammed into the vehicle, according to initial explanations given to the press by the Civil Defense. The truck, speeding, would have overturned after hitting a wall.

The truck was carrying “more than one hundred people of different nationalities,” said in a statement the National Commission on Human Rights (CNDH) in Mexico City. “According to the testimonies of survivors, most of the victims are from Guatemala,” said the regional director of Civil Defense, Luis Manuel Garcia.

President of Guatemala, Alejandro Giammattei, promised “all necessary consular assistance, including repatriation” in a message of condolence and solidarity on Twitter. “I deeply regret the tragedy caused by the overthrow of a truck in Chiapas carrying migrants from Central America. It is very painful,” tweeted his Mexican counterpart, Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador.

a passage to the United States

The National Institute of Migration (INM) said in a statement that “visitors card for humanitarian reasons” would be offered to the survivors, in addition to humanitarian aid (food, shelter). INM will coordinate with local and federal authorities “to provide consular assistance, identify the body, funeral expenses.” The Red Cross, firefighters and ambulances were deployed there. The injured were transported to private and public hospitals in the region.

The accident occurred in the state of Chiapas, gateway for migrants from Central America (Honduras and El Salvador mainly) in the hope of reaching the United States. Truck transport is one of the usual methods used by smugglers. Other migrants prefer to cross Mexico “caravan” on foot and take the opportunity to claim their rights.

“We need migration alternatives and legal means to prevent tragedies like this,” said the Mexican branch of the High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) United Nations in his message of condolences.

“Stay in Mexico”

Traditional entrance lane, Mexico faces this year in major arrivals of migrants from not only of Honduras and El Salvador but also in Haiti. From January to October, the country recorded 108 195 asylum applications, a record, according to the latest official figures. Meanwhile, the US show firmness against migrants; their journey is “deeply dangerous and will not succeed,” warned Secretary of State Tony Blinken during a trip to Mexico in early October.

The accident took place the same day that the first two migrants were returned from the United States to Mexico under a program set up in the era of former President Donald Trump, suspended Joe Biden, but reactivated decision of the US Supreme Court.

/Media reports.