In the south of Mexico, in the border of the Aztec country with Guatemala, there is a wall that nobody talks about
Since the beginning of his presidential campaign, Donald Trump promised to build a wall between Mexico and the United States to combat illegal immigration. The controversial measure unleashed indignation in the international community and victimized a country that for years has worked to become one of Washington's main allies.
Leer en español: Migración: México deporta más inmigrantes indocumentados que EE.UU.
However, the massive wall of which prototypes are already known and which, according to Trump, Mexico will pay, is not the only border division that the Aztec nation would hold. A concrete wall of one meter and a half of high, with barbed wire at the top, runs more than a kilometer on the border of Mexico with Guatemala and was built with the objective of preventing the entry of undocumented immigrants from Central America.
It all started on July 7, 2014, when the president of Mexico, Enrique Peña Nieto, and the then president of Guatemala, Otto Pérez Molina, announced the start of a migration security project called Plan Frontera Sur (Southern Border Plan, in English). This was proposed as a strategy to regulate and dignify the passage of immigrants at the border. However, its implementation meant an increase in vigilance, controls and the acceleration of the deportation processes of Central American citizens who arrive in Mexico.
Mexico: New "refuge" for the undocumented?
According to a report published in early 2018 by the National Human Rights Commission (NHRI), nearly half of the Central American migrants who cross through Mexico are no longer planning to reach the United States, and decide to stay in the Aztec nation to avoid deportations or even death. In many of these cases, migrants are not even clear about the city that they will inhabit and decide to settle in the first place where they find work.
The document also indicates that of the undocumented population that arrives in Mexico, 70% are Hondurans, 12% Salvadorans, 10% Guatemalans, 3.5% Haitians and 1.8% Nicaraguans. The rest, with less than 1%, are Cubans and Africans from Ghana, the Republic of Congo and Cameroon.
The phenomenon would have started in 2014 when both the U.S. and Mexico increased security measures in their border areas. According to members of pro-immigrant organizations in Mexico, since the government of Barack Obama, the United States provides technology, personnel training, and advice so that the wall on Mexico's southern border becomes an effective blocking barrier for those trying to reach the northern country.
Thus, since 2014, Mexico deports more undocumented immigrants than the U.S. According to the International Organization for Migration (IOM), it is estimated that every year 150,000 citizens of Central American origin are returned to their nations. Many of those who manage to stay must endure long legalization processes to become citizens or obtain work permits. According to the Migration Report of the Organization of American States (OAS), this is due to the harsh immigration laws that, according to some political analysts, are even harsher than those applied by the United States.
Thus, organizations that work in the protection of human rights qualify as "hypocrite" Mexico's stance against the construction of the wall on the border with the U.S., and according to the newspaper Excélsior, they ask the government to review its own immigration policies before judging those of its neighboring country. This is because, since the lifting of this division in the south, crime and the violation of human rights in the area have increased.
Latin American Post | Krishna Jaramillo
Translated from "Migración: México deporta más inmigrantes indocumentados que EE.UU."