Submitted by ub on Tue, 06/16/2015 - 23:10

Following last year's surge of unaccompanied minor migrants from Central America that set off alarms in the United States, Mexico is now detaining more Central Americans than the United States, according to government data analyzed by the research and advocacy organization Washington Office on Latin America.

This shift becomes apparent when combining data from U.S. Customs and Border Protection and Mexico’s National Institute for Migration for the first seven months of fiscal year 2015. Between October 2014 and April 2015, U.S. Customs and Border Patrol detained 70,448 “Other than Mexican” citizens at its border. The overwhelming majority of these were Central Americans, but we do not yet know exactly how many. During this same period, Mexican authorities detained 92,889 Central Americans in Mexico.

These numbers are striking. They show that the so-called ‘surge’ of 2014 hasn’t really ended. Enormous numbers of Central Americans are still fleeing, but most of them are now getting caught in Mexico instead of the United States. This means it’s just as urgent as it was last year to address the violence and poverty driving Central American migration. But Mexico’s aggressive efforts against migrants have masked the sense of urgency that we should be feeling here in the United States about Central America’s humanitarian crisis.

Central America’s Unresolved Migrant Crisis

IACHR Expresses Concern over Mexico’s Southern Border Plan