Jul 28, 2015

Mexico Rescues 68 Central American Migrants Abandoned in 2 Trucks

Latin American Herald Tribune: A total of 68 undocumented Central American migrants were rescued from two trucks in the Mexican Gulf coast state of Veracruz, immigration officials and police said.

The migrants showed signs of dehydration when they were rescued by state police officers, having spent more than 10 hours inside the vehicles in 30 C (86 F) weather. Read more. 

Mexican Authorities Destroy 25 Tons of Narcotics

Note: Incinerating or otherwise destroying illegal drugs is common practice and arguably prevents corrupt cops and other law enforcement agents from selling confiscated substances on the market. But clothes?

There are people who need clothing, including children in many parts of the country. The soil gave a growing cycle to produce the plant, the farmer sowed and harvested it. The seamstress sewed it. Likely none of them were involved in the presumed contraband operation.

The Mexican law specifically refers to drugs and "items used to commit crimes". A t-shirt? What about children's homes. or orphanages, poor communities or rural schools? Wouldn't this be a better place for 41 tons of clothing to end up? This is an absurd interpretation of the law. It is grossly wasteful and designed only to benefit gougers who use brand names to charge exorbitant prices for simple products.

Latin American Herald Tribune: More than 25 tons of narcotics and 41 tons of clothing were incinerated at a facility in Tamaulipas, a state in northeastern Mexico, the Attorney General’s Office said Tuesday.

The drugs and clothing were seized in more than 60 investigations in cities in Tamaulipas, which is on the border with the United States, the AG’s office said in a statement. Read more. 

Jul 27, 2015

Immigration to U.S. from Mexico drops sharply

Vallarta Daily: Even as immigration remains a hot topic in the U.S. presidential campaign, the number of people emigrating from Mexico to the United States, legally and illegally, has dropped sharply in recent years, research published Wednesday shows.

Demographers at the University of Texas San Antonio and the University of New Hampshire say the number of immigrants coming from Mexico peaked in 2003, and has fallen by more than half since then. Read more. 

More Than 46% of Mexicans Live in Poverty

Latin American Herald Tribune: The poverty rate in Mexico increased from 45.5 percent in 2012 to 46.2 percent in 2014, representing 55.3 million people, the National Council for the Evaluation of Social Development Policy, known as Coneval, says in a new report.

At the same time, the number of people living in extreme poverty fell from 11.5 million to 11.4 million over a two-year period that saw Mexico’s population grow from 117.3 million to 119.9 million. Read more. 

Understanding Mexico's passport requirement

San Diego Union Tribune: Mexico’s top immigration official in Baja California worked Tuesday to assuage fears of long southbound pedestrian lines into the country as his agency prepares to step up enforcement of a requirement that U.S. visitors carry a passport when entering Mexico.

“We are going to do everything possible to ensure that there are no obstacles,” Rodulfo Figueroa said during a news conference at the offices of the Tijuana Tourism and Conventions Committee. "We're going to start applying the law gradually. We know there is going to be a learning period, we won't be inflexible in applying the law, but certainly we'll try to educate the public." Read more. 

Jul 23, 2015

Possible Army Involvement in Disappearances of 7 in Mexico, Secretariat Says

Latin American Herald Tribune: Officials have found signs that soldiers may have played a role in the disappearance of seven people in Zacatecas, a state in north-central Mexico, earlier this month, the Defense Secretariat said.

“With regard to the events related to the disappearance of seven people on July 7, 2015, in Calera, Zacatecas, indications have been found of the likely involvement of military personnel,” the secretariat said in a statement. Read more. 

Jul 22, 2015

‘There's No Real Fight Against Drugs’

The Atlantic: The slight man at the breakfast table seemed more like an evangelical minister than someone who once brokered deals between Mexican drug lords and state governors. He wore a meticulously pressed button-down, a gold watch, gold-rimmed glasses, and a gold cross around his neck. His dark brown hair was styled in a comb-over. And when his breakfast companions started to tuck into their bowls of oatmeal and plates of salmon benedict, he cleared his throat and asked for a moment of silence.

“Would you mind if I say grace?” he asked.

The gathering last week at Le Peep café in San Antonio would seem unusual almost anywhere except south Texas, where Mexico kind of blends into the United States—and so does the drug trade. Seated next to the cartel operative was a senior Mexican intelligence official. And next to him was a veteran American counternarcotics agent. They bowed their heads for prayer and then proceeded to talk a peculiar kind of shop. Read more.