18 | NOV | 2019
Shooting of Central American migrant investigated in Mexico
Mexico’s government is trying to tighten its borders under pressure from U.S. President Donald Trump – Photo: José Luis González/REUTERS

Shooting of Central American migrant investigated in Mexico

02/08/2019
17:01
Reuters
Mexico City
Rebekah F. Ward, Lizbeth Díaz, Diego Ore, Delphione Schrank, Dave Graham, Rashmi Aich, Daina Beth Solomon & Marguerita Choy/REUTERS
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The man’s killing comes at a time when activists and local migrant shelters have reported a series of tough measures on migrants

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Mexican authorities are investigating the death of a Central American father shot by police in the northern city of Saltillo, state prosecutors said on Thursday.

A member of a state police unit focused on drug crime shot and killed a Central American migrant at the train station in Saltillo on Wednesday night, the Attorney General of Coahuila state Gerardo Márquez told in a news conference.

The man’s death comes at a time when activists and local migrant shelters in Saltillo denounced a series of crackdowns on migrants. Last week, federal police were investigated for threatening to raid a migrant shelter near where the shooting took place.

International human rights organizations, including Amnesty International and the United Nations Human Rights Council, demanded a thorough investigation of the case.

“Mexican authorities must treat migrants and their families with humanity, not chase them nor shoot them,” Amnesty International Mexico said on Twitter.

 

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Members of the police unit were investigating four men connected with narcotics sales, and told prosecutors they heard gunfire as they chased two suspects towards a train station in Saltillo, State Attorney General Márquez said.

The two suspects ran towards an area where a group of migrants stood and police opened fire, killing the migrant, though this was still under investigation, Márquez said.

The human rights ombudsman for the state of Coahuila, Hugo Morales, said the man was a Central American with an eight-year-old daughter who has been transferred to the custody of the state agency for children and families (PRONNIF).

Nearby migrant shelter Casa del Migrante de Saltillo criticized the shooting and said the victim was a 29-year-old Honduran called Marco.

On Friday, Mexican President Andrés Manuel López Obrador instructed officials to investigate the killing of the Honduran migrant to determine the role of officials in his death.

Mexico’s government is trying to tighten its borders under pressure from U.S. President Donald Trump, who has threatened to impose tariffs on Mexican goods entering the United States if Mexico does not halt a surge in migrants from Central America.

“The killing of a Honduran migrant in Saltillo is very unfortunate,” López Obrador said at his daily news conference.

 

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Coahuila police have recognized their responsibility in the incident, but further checks should be made, he added.

“I have ordered an investigation, because there was a version that maintained that it had to do with migration agents who acted against the migrant,” López Obrador said, without providing details.

The administration would release further information on Friday, he added.

On Thursday, Mexico’s Public Security Ministry and the National Migration Institute (INM)said in a joint statement that neither federal police nor migration officials participated in any operation related to the incident.

The INM did not immediately respond to a request for comment following Lopez Obrador’s remarks on Friday.

Federal police were investigated last month for threatening to raid a migrant shelter near the site of the Saltillo shooting.
 

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