Death toll on the Mexico-U.S. border

Newsroom & Agencies
Death toll on the Mexico-U.S. border
Migrants are risking their lives to enter the U.S. and request asylum - Photo: José Luis González/REUTERS

Death toll on the Mexico-U.S. border

Newsroom & Agencies
Mexico City
Reuters, Sandra Tovar
-A +A
The majority of the victims were small children

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On Sunday, a migrant and his daughter drowned while trying to cross the Río Grande river.

Oscar Alberto Martínez was 25 years old and Valeria was almost 2 years old. They traveled to Mexico from El Salvador.

Tania, Oscar's wife, said that they tried to cross the river on Sunday afternoon and that they had been living in Matamoros, in the state of Tamaulipas, for 2 months while their asylum request was processed but since the process was taking so long, they decided to cross the river.

The woman said her husband and daughter began to drown and that she couldn't help them.

She then alerted the authorities but they couldn't find the bodies until Monday

Unfortunately, migrant deaths have also been registered in the U.S. side of the river.

On Monday, authorities in Texas reported seven migrant deaths, including those a woman, two babies, and a toddler, showing the danger of extreme summer heat as Central American families surge across the U.S.-Mexico border.

According to a local law enforcement official, the woman and three children may have been dead for days before they were found by the U.S. Border Patrol near the Río Grande river in South Texas on Sunday.

They are thought to have died from heat exposure and dehydration in an area about 29 km east of McAllen.

To the west, U.S. Border Patrol agents in the Del Rio area recovered the bodies of two men on ranchland near Carrizo Springs after anonymous calls on June 19 and June 20 alerted them about lost migrants.

Another decomposed body was found June 20 on the riverbank of the Río Grande river near Normandy.

“The extreme temperatures during this time of year can be fatal,” said Del Rio Sector Chief Patrol Agent Raul Ortiz.

After the Trump administration set limits on how many people can claim asylum each day at ports of entry, some migrant families are instead attempting risky border crossings to make their claims.

A six-year-old girl from India died earlier this month from heat stroke in western Arizona after smugglers left a group of migrants in a remote desert location.

Three children and a Honduran man are believed to have died in April when their raft overturned on the Río Grande river near Del Rio. Moreover, water rescues at the popular crossing point have soared.

The U.S. Border Patrol reported 283 migrant fatalities on the border in 2018. Nevertheless, human rights activists say the number is far higher as the remains of many migrants are never found and the agency’s data does not include all deaths registered by local authorities.


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