| 23 May 2024, Thursday |

Mexico reports people-smuggling surge amid jump in migration

The government stated on Wednesday that people-smuggling offenses in Mexico have more than quadrupled since 2020, as the nation struggles to cope with a dramatic surge in illegal immigration across the US border.

Mexico recorded 1,232 people-smuggling offenses between January and August, up almost 228 percent over the 376 recorded during the same time in 2020, according to Security Minister Rosa Icela Rodriguez during a monthly government press conference.

Many migrants, according to government officials, pay people smugglers to undertake the hazardous trek from Mexico’s southern border with Guatemala to the United States.

Rodriguez made the announcement alongside President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador, whose administration has had to contend with a massive jump in the number of undocumented migrants from around the Americas trying to reach the United States.

Last week, thousands of mostly Haitian migrants crossed the Mexico-U.S. border at Del Rio, Texas, creating a new human-rights headache for U.S. President Joe Biden and Lopez Obrador.

Even as pressure built on Biden to halt expulsions of Haitians to their destitute, struggling nation, Mexico and the United States were ready to fly more Haitian migrants away from U.S.-Mexico border camps on Wednesday.

Biden was elected in January on a promise to take a more compassionate approach to immigration than his hardline predecessor, Donald Trump, who Mexican authorities say has encouraged people to try their luck at the border.

The number of persons apprehended while attempting to enter the US border illegally has more than quadrupled this year, prompting Washington to put pressure on Mexico to control migrant flows.

  • Reuters