Over 25 Central American Migrants Die in Truck Accident

March 8, 2019 Updated: March 8, 2019

More than 25 Central American migrants died in an accident in southern Mexico on March 7. Twenty-nine others were injured.

The truck they were traveling in lost control and overturned in the Mexican state of Chiapas. Chiapas is the usual entry point into Mexico for migrants traveling from Guatemala, the Associated Press reported.

The region has seen increasing scrutiny due to several large migrant caravans headed toward the U.S. border in recent months.

Authorities are investigating the accident, and have not provided the nationalities of all of the victims. The injured were taken to local hospitals.

There have been other tragedies along the routes of Central American migrants venturing through Mexico toward the United States. Two young Hondurans, aged 16 and 17, were murdered after they left a shelter for underage migrants in the Mexican border city of Tijuana late last year.

They were found stabbed and strangled, according to The Guardian. A third person was severely injured in the incident, and his or her life was considered in danger due to witnessing what happened.

At least two others migrants also recently died on their journey through Mexico—one of a drug overdose, the other after getting run over by a vehicle, according to the publication.

In recent years, hundreds of migrants have disappeared in the Mexican state of Veracruz, due to kidnappers in the area seeking ransom pay. Local authorities last year discovered the remains of at least 174 people buried in secret graves, sparking questions on whether the bodies were of migrants, NBC News reported.

On Dec. 17 the United States and Mexico announced the creation of a bilateral assistance program meant to curb Central American migration. The United States said it would contribute $10.6 billion, The Washington Post reported.

Mexico said it would contribute $25 billion to develop southern Mexico over five years, which Mexican president Andrés Manuel López Obrador suggested could provide Central Americans work visas as a source of employment.

The United States has for years given Central American countries aid in the hopes of stemming immigration. In 2016, the Obama administration announced $750 billion to Honduras, Guatemala, and El Salvador, after the administration experienced a surge in unaccompanied children trying to enter the United States.

The Trump administration has been reviewing the effectiveness of that funding to examine whether the money is actually accomplishing the intended purpose. The administration has been discussing whether to reduce aid funds, in the midst of a constant barrage of Central American migrant caravans that both enter the United States illegally and overwhelm legal ports of entry.

A freight train carrying over 400 Central Americans arrived in the border city of Mexicali, on March 6, the latest arrival of a group of migrants from the countries sending caravans. Mexican authorities deemed the practice of riding freight trains illegal in 2014, after it was used as a widespread means of getting to the U.S. border.

The train routes begin in Chiapas, then head up to Mexico City, and from there take a number of routes towards different parts of the border, the Washington Examiner reported.

President Trump tweeted about the border wall, currently in the process of construction, aimed to help stem the crisis of illegal border crossings as a result of the migrant caravans.

“We are apprehending record numbers of illegal immigrants – but we need the Wall to help our great Border Patrol Agents!” he tweeted on March 8.

“The Wall is being built and is well under construction. Big impact will be made. Many additional contracts are close to being signed. Far ahead of schedule despite all of the Democrat Obstruction and Fake News!” he tweeted slightly earlier, on March 8.

From NTD News