109 migrants found crammed inside Mexican truck

Updated: Jan 27, 2018, 13:23 IST | IANS

Mexican authorities have discovered 109 migrants showing signs of dehydration and suffocation crammed inside a truck in Tamaulipas, an official report said

 Mexico City: Mexican authorities have discovered 109 migrants showing signs of dehydration and suffocation crammed inside a truck in Tamaulipas, an official report said. The migrants were trying to reach the US, and according to their statement, "we were taken by human traffickers from the state of Chiapas to Tamaulipas", Efe news reported. The National Migration Institute (INM) reported on Friday that the Central American migrants were found inside the semi-trailer truck near a military post Oyama.

"The INM, in coordination with units of the Mexican army, rescued 109 migrants travelling in an overcrowded truck and trailer without food or water...," the institute said in a statement. Around 5 p.m. on Thursday the truck was intercepted at the inspection point. The migrants showed "signs of dehydration and asphyxiation due to the length of time they had been crowded inside", the report said. The group rescued included 83 Guatemalans (40 men, 11 women, 32 minors), 17 Hondurans (10 men, two women, five minors) and nine Salvadorans (five men, two women, two unaccompanied minors).

In line with agreements that Mexico maintains with the Central America's Northern Triangle nations, authorities communicated immediately with the migrants' respective consulates to arrange an assisted return home. The INM said the human rights of the rescued were honoured at all times and they were informed of their right to apply for asylum. The truck driver and his Mexican assistants were arrested for human trafficking.

Thousands of undocumented migrants cross Mexican territory on their way to the US every year. They are exposed to hold-ups, extortion, kidnapping and even murder by criminal gangs, as well as abuse at the hands of corrupt authorities during their journey.

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