Sunday, July 21, 2024

63 migrants detained at military checkpoint near Ciudad Juárez

The National Migration Institute (INM) in Chihuahua rescued 63 foreigners being transported in overcrowded conditions in the bed of a cargo truck.

The trailer was stopped at a military checkpoint near the desert town of Samalayuca about 42 kilometers south of the United States border at Ciudad Juárez.

63 migrants from Central America were discovered in the bed of a cargo truck at a military checkpoint in northern Chihuahua
The 63 migrants from Central America were crowded into the bed of a cargo truck traveling towards Ciudad Juárez. (@INAMI_mx/X)

In a press bulletin released on Saturday, the INM said the truck was moving erratically, prompting soldiers to stop the vehicle. Upon inspection, the soldiers discovered that none of the truck’s 63 passengers had the proper immigration documents, requiring the presence of INM personnel. No information was provided on the immigration status of the driver or drivers of the vehicle.

The INM moved the immigrants to a nearby INM facility where they received medical attention. It is not known how long they had been traveling in these conditions.

The INM reports that among the 63 persons detained, 18 hailed from Guatemala, 23 were from Ecuador, six from El Salvador, five from Honduras and two were from the Dominican Republic. Three of the immigrants were categorized as unaccompanied minors, one each from El Salvador, Ecuador and Guatemala.

The adults were transported to the aforementioned INM facility, while three families traveling together were taken to a separate office that handles families and unaccompanied youth. The three unaccompanied children were sent to the INM’s housing center for young migrants in Ciudad Juárez.

The checkpoint at which the cargo truck was stopped is the final checkpoint before Ciudad Juárez, which has seen the number of arriving migrants surge in recent years. There, many are targeted by criminal groups who use kidnapping, torture and extortion to control and profit from the rising migrant population.

Last week, the U.S. Department of Homeland Security carried out a joint operation with Mexican authorities to rescue 13 kidnapped migrants from a Ciudad Juárez stash house, where the captives “were beaten, tortured, sexually assaulted and extorted for additional smuggling fees by members of a transnational criminal organization.”

With reports from La Jornada, Forbes México and Vanguardia

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