Thursday, July 7, 2022

Migrants rescued from abandoned container after cries heard from inside

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Migrants found in Guatemala
The group were found in Guatemala and taken to a local shelter (Picture: @PNCdeGuatemala/Twitter)

More than 100 migrants have been rescued after being abandoned in a shipping container in southern Guatemala.

Police confirmed on Saturday that they had rescued 126 mostly Haitian people, who had hoped to travel to the United States via Mexico, after hearing cries from the crate.

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The group were found at dawn following a report of an abandoned trailer on a road between the towns of Nueva Concepcion and Cocales in the central American country.

Police spokesman Jorge Aguilar explained: ‘We heard cries and knocks coming from inside the container. We opened the doors and found inside 126 undocumented people: 106 from Haiti, 11 from Nepal and nine from Ghana’.

The group was taken to a shelter run by the Guatemalan Migration Institution.

Every year, thousands of Guatemalans, Hondurans, Salvadorans and Nicaraguans attempt to reach the United States in search of a better life.

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But in recent months the problem has worsened, plunging Central America into a major migration crisis.

And thousands of Haitians are also embarking on the dangerous and harrowing journeys to reach the USA via Central America.

In 2021 alone more than 50 migrants have died while trying to cross a notoriously dangerous jungle corridor in Panama known as the Darien Gap, according to the Panamanian prosecutor’s office.

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The International Organization for Migration said on Friday that more than 7,500 Haitian migrants have been deported in less than three weeks by the United States, which has chartered 70 deportation flights.

The Mexican government has also repatriated Haitian migrants to Port-au-Prince.

On Saturday, the US Ambassador to Mexico, Ken Salazar, called for a solution to the ‘significant issue’ led by both countries.

His comments came the day after US Secretary of State Antony Blinken met with Mexican President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador following a period of strained cooperation.

President Joe Biden’s administration is increasingly reliant on its southern neighbour to stem migration not only from Central America and Haiti, but also Venezuela.

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MORE : Kamala Harris traveling to Mexico and Guatemala amid Biden administration ‘border crisis’

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