Jun 22, 2015
Mexico now deports more Central American immigrants than the U.S. does. Between October and April, Mexico detained nearly 93,000 Central Americans, while the U.S. detained about 70,000 non-Mexican immigrants for not having papers. Just a year before, between October 2013 and April 2014, the U.S. had detained nearly 160,000 undocumented “other than Mexicans,” more than three times the number of Central Americans held in Mexico.
The number of women and children among these immigrants is very high – in 2014 alone, more than 46,000 unaccompanied minors from Central America entered the U.S. And everyone knows the reason for this mass exodus: these are poor, working-class people who are trying to escape unemployment, poverty and violence. But the U.S. and Mexican governments arrest, imprison and deport them. They criminalize poor immigrants, in other words, including children.
To avoid the embarrassing publicity about all this, the U.S. government asked the Mexican government to stop the flow of Central American immigrants, and promised to pay for it. Mexico established more border checkpoints and sent 5,000 more federal police to its border with Guatemala. Mexican authorities increased the raids on northbound trains.
So instead of imprisoning poor people in the U.S., the U.S. government wants them to be imprisoned in their country, in the poverty and violence they are caught up in.