More than 47.000 migrants, travelling through Mexico, have died during the last six years. The staggering number of lost lives has been reported by the Mexican Institute for Women in Migration.
The Institute for Women in Migration (IMUMI) is a civic organization that is advocating the rights of women in migration. Its main focus is on migrating women during their transit through Mexico as well as migrant women with residence in the United States. According to the institute, which was founded in 2010, about 8.800 of the 47.000 dead migrants remain unidentified.
The Mexican El Camino newspaper quotes the priest, and director of a migrant shelter in Oaxaca, Alejandro Solalinde, as saying that at least 10.000 Central American migrants are reported as missing, although other estimates put the number as high as 70.000.
Solalinde stressed, that most of the migrants are from Central American countries and that most of them are trying to reach the United States. Solalinde added:
“Most of these migrants are helpless, in a reality in which they can be robbed, extorted, beaten, raped, tortured, kidnapped and murdered, the victims of criminal gangs as well as corrupt officials”.
The La Jornada newspaper quotes the founder of the Colegio de la Frontera Norte, Jorge A.Bautamente, as saying that the Mexican government has failed to react to the phenomenon of migration.
Bautamente, who was the UN Special Rapporteur for Human Rights of Migrants from 2005 to 2011, said that trying to explain violence only as a question of organized crime, as the previous government did, si a misconception.
The dangers for the migrants however, do not end when they are reaching the border into the United States. Many have died during smuggling operations across the border, suffocating in the back of trucks or being shot, not only by border guards and vigilante, but by the smugglers themselves.
After arriving in the USA, many are suffering miserable circumstances of exploitation without having any family or other social support network.
At the same time, an exploitative economic system in the United States, incites smaller and midi sized businesses as well as major corporations to on the one hand exploit migrants, and on the other hand, to use the migrants to push down the minimum wages in the United States.