mexico stops migrants from freight train hopping with checkpoints
After suspending 60 freight trains running to prevent serious injuries and death to thousands of desperate migrants, Mexico will set up checkpoints. Mexican authorities say they have a crisis-like situation as thousands of migrants make risky journeys from neighboring countries and through Mexico through jungles and other rough terrains.
On Tuesday, Ferromex, a train company in Mexico, suspended services for 60 freight trains as more than 4,000 migrants were willing to risk their lives, there were an additional 1,500 people waiting at the rail yard in Torreon and 800 more at the freight yards in Irapuato, 1,000 migrants in San Francisco de los Romo, and more than 1,000 in Ciudad Juarez.
Migrants Jumping Freight Trains
Ferromex said the notable increase in migrants severe risk that the use of freight trains for transportation represents to their physical safety. The company took the decision after two people were killed and four others. And over the years, freight trains have been leaving a trail of deaths and mutilations in Mexico.
As such, the National Migration Institute proposed having federal immigration agents on the train and for Ferromex to deploy private security personnel traveling with the crew. However, human rights organizations say this is not a solution to the crisis as it will exacerbate other risks. The Documentation Network of Migrant Defense said migrants travel by train, with all the associated risks because they have no other option.
REDODEM pointed out that checkpoints will only give rise to criminal groups. People are taken off buses and extorted. There have also reported incidents of immigration authorities tearing up humanitarian visas and identification documents, and arresting the migrants.
New Checkpoints for Migrants
Now, there are plans to set up new checkpoints. Mexico’s National Immigration Institute did not give any details about where the checkpoints would be established.
But it said that so far this month, their officers detained about 9,000 migrants per day an increase over the daily average of about 6,125 in the first eight months of 2023. Mexico detained about 1.47 million migrants and deported 788,089 people.