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Central America/Mexico Migrant News Brief for February 13, 2016

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A compilation of this week’s top articles and reports related to issues of migration from Central America and Mexico (articles in English and Spanish).
See: Root Causes; Mexican Enforcement; U.S. Enforcement; New Reports & Resources.

Root Causes

•   El Salvador’s Violence: No Easy Way Out
Sarah Kinosian, Angelika Albaladejo, and Lisa Gaugaard, CIP, LAWGEF, February 10, 2016
Our series of posts in the coming days will lay out El Salvador’s current security situation and provide recommendations for U.S. policy:

•   As Gang Violence Worsens, More Salvadorans Flee
UNHCR, February 3, 2016
“Their flight from danger is becoming increasingly common in El Salvador, where the gangs’ criminal activities include murder, extortion, kidnap and rape, and now impact people from all walks of life.”

•   Las muertes invisibles de las mujeres y los hombres trans
Maria Luz Nochez, Nelson Rauda Zablah y Jimmy Alvarado, El Faro, 25 de enero de 2016
“Organizaciones de derechos humanos denuncian que desde 1995 más de 500 personas LGBTI han sido asesinadas sin que se investiguen siquiera sus casos.”

•   Con AK-47 habrían ultimado a comunicador hondureño
CLibre, 7 de febrero de 2016
“El director de una de las radios juveniles, de mayor entretenimiento del país, fue asesinado la madrugada del sábado, en el barrio Río Piedras de San Pedro Sula, al norte de Honduras.”

•   Meeting the Needs of Kids in the U.S. Who Fled Violence in Central America
Stell Simonton, Youth Today, February 9, 2016
“Many of the 322 Salvadoran kids interviewed by social scientist Elizabeth G. Kennedy reported hearing gunshots nightly. Some lived in contested gang territory. One hundred said their school had gangs inside, and reported teachers and school directors occasionally helping to recruit kids into gangs.”

•   Here’s Obama’s $1.8 Billion Plan To Fight Zika Virus
Erin Schumaker and Anna Almendrala, Huffington Post, February 8, 2015
“President Obama announced Monday he will seek $1.8 billion in emergency funding from Congress to fight Zika virus at home and abroad.”

•   In Central America, Gangs an Obstacle in Battle Against Zika
Christopher Sherman, ABC News, February 10, 2016
“For health workers battling Zika across much of Central America, the immediate menace is not the mosquitoes that transmit the virus. It’s the gangsters who control the streets, and sometimes threaten their lives.”

•   State Department Budget Calls Central America a Top Priority
Franco Ordoñez, The Wichita Eagle, February 9, 2016
“The budget proposal sent to Congress on Tuesday requested $750 million for the State Department to fight poverty, improve security and reform government in Central America, reflecting the administration’s effort to counter the flight of unaccompanied children and families from the region’s violence.”

•   Valley of Sorrows
Construyendo un Mundo Mejor en el Valle de Juárez
Ryan Bemis, America Magazine, February 3, 2016
“Rebuilding community along the Mexican border”

•   Caso Tierra Blanca: Hallan casi tres mil fragmentos de restos humanos en un rancho de Veracruz
Arturo Angel, Animal Político, 10 de febrero de 2016
“Se estima que los restos pertenecen a cientos de víctimas que fueron asesinadas y sus cuerpos quemados y triturados. Familiares de caso Tierra Blanca buscan peritos argentinos y de Nuevo México para confirmar que son los restos de sus hijos.”

•   [VIDEO] Meet the Minors Risking Their Lives to Come to America
ThinkProgress, February 12, 2016

Mexican Enforcement
  
•   “More Migrants Are Coming, and They’re Arriving More Hurt”: Tales from Mexico City Migrant Shelters
Emma Buckhout, LAWG, February 12, 2016
“[Corresponding] with increases in violence in the Northern Triangle of Central America and increased migration enforcement operations in Mexico, Mexico City is receiving a growing number of migrants, including children, women, and family units who are increasingly hurt and in need of protection.”

•   Step by Step on a Desperate Trek by Migrants Through Mexico
Azam Ahmed, The New York Times, February 8, 2016
“Two days with 10 men who left Central America in early November to embark on an exhausting journey, made riskier by the Mexican authorities’ crackdown on migrants.”

•   ‘All You Can Do is Run’: Central American Children Fleeing Violence Head for Mexico
Amy Stillman, The Guardian, February 10, 2016
“At Tapachula’s two shelters, which cater to unaccompanied minors and those travelling with female relatives, ‘children spend all day long doing nothing’, said Perrine Leclerc, head of UNHCR’s field office in the city. ‘They don’t have enough staff to look after the children or to organise activities. It is only the basics. They give you a bed and they give you food.’”

•   ‘Not the Mexico our Mother Wants’: Pope Francis Will Visit Some of Mexico’s Most Violent Areas
Christopher Woody, Business Insider, February 8, 2016
“Pope Francis will visit some of the poorest and most violent corners of Mexico on his first visit as pontiff, and will also head to the northern border to address theplight of migrants trying to reach the US.”

•   ‘Voy a México como misionero de paz’, dice el Papa Francisco
Animal Politico, February 7, 2016
“A cinco días de su primera visita a México, el Papa Francisco se dijo contento por llegar al país y dijo, en un mensaje a medios, que lo único que pretende con su llegada es venir como ‘misionero de la misericordia y de la paz’, omitiendo cualquier comentario sobre política o conflicto.”

•   Padres de Ayotzinapa estarán en primera fila en misa del Papa
EFE, Excelsior, 9 de febrero de 2016
“Tres espacios en la primera fila de la misa de despedida que oficiará elpapa Francisco en Ciudad Juárez, en el norte de México, estarán reservados para los padres de los 43 estudiantes desaparecidos en Ayotzinapa en septiembre de 2014, con los que el pontífice no se reunirá, como le pedían ellos.”

•   IACHR Welcomes the Creation of Institutions for the Protection of the Rights of Migrants in Mexico (English)
CIDH celebra creación de instancias para la protección de derechos de migrantes en México (español)
Inter-American Commission on Human Rights, February 8, 2016
“Furthermore, the IACHR also urges the OAS Member States to implement measures at the national and regional levels to ensure access to justice and reparation to migrants and their families when they have been victims of crimes or human rights violations, regardless of the country where they are located.”

•   Mexican Police Find Dozens of Kidnapped Migrants after Blast at House
Latin American Herald Tribune
, February 2016
“An explosion at a house in Reynosa, located across the Rio Grande from McAllen, Texas, tipped Mexican authorities off to an organization that was holding at least 60 Central American migrants captive, the Tamaulipas Coordination Group said.”

U.S. Enforcement

•   6 Facts That Erase Any Doubt U.S. Officials Know They Are Deporting People To Their Deaths
Esther Yu-Hsi Lee, ThinkProgress, February 6, 2016
“In spite of the increasing dangers, the U.S. has yet to halt deportations back to Central America. But Obama administration officials have come close to acknowledging the nature of the situation on the ground. Here are just a few examples of U.S. officials suggesting they’re aware that Central America has a refugee crisis.”

•   Deportation Nation: Sending Central American Refugees Back to Certain Death
Suyapa Portillo, Huffington Post, February 9, 2016
“The Obama administration has announced its plan to deport Central American families. Immigration raids are underway in New York, Texas, Los Angeles and Georgia and more than 121 people have been deported since January 1. Sending refugees back will mean certain violence for many families.”

•   Political Support for Central American Refugees Grows
Mary Meg McCarthy, Heartland Alliance’s National Immigrant Justice Center, February 11, 2016
“Senators Harry Reid (D-NV), Richard Durbin (D-IL), Patrick Leahy (I-VT), Robert Menendez (D-NJ), and Patty Murray (D-WA) today introduced the ‘Fair Day in Court for Kids Act of 2016,’ to expand access to counsel to children and others for whom counsel is necessary to help ensure fairness in their immigration proceedings.”

•   ‘Batalla en la Frontera’ Examines Border Patrol’s Use of Deadly Force
Andrew Becker, Reveal, February 10, 2016
“Amid a national debate around police use of force, The Center for Investigative Reporting, in collaboration with Telemundo and MSNBC, spent seven months investigating deadly force by Border Patrol agents and how these incidents are handled by its parent agency, U.S. Customs and Border Protection.”

•   Pope Francis Will Stand With Migrants at U.S. Border
Dudley Althaus and Jose de Cordoba, The Wall Street Journal, February 9, 2016
“Pope Francis arrives in Mexico on Friday for a six-day visit that will end with a highly symbolic and potentially controversial act: the pontiff taking a stand on the fortified U.S. border to show solidarity with the migrants trying to cross it.”

•   Obama pide $319 millones por aumento de niños migrantes este año
Maria Peña, La Opinión, 9 de febrero de 2016
“La Administración Obama solicitó este martes al Congreso un total de $319 millones para el ‘cuidado temporal y transporte’ de hasta 75,000 niños no acompañados para el año fiscal 2017, en una clara señal de que anticipa un aumento de la emigración ilegal desde Centroamérica.”

•   Demandan al gobierno de Obama que destape su política de deportaciones
Jorge Cancino, Univision, 9 de febrero de 2016
“La demanda, fundamentada en la Ley de Libertad de Información (FOIA, por su sigla en inglés), exige al Departamento de Justicia que libere los documentos de la política que ordenó colocar en proceso de vía rápida los casos de familias de migrantes originarios del Triángulo Norte que llegaron a Estados Unidos en busca de asilo.”

•   “Crónicas de Sábado” presenta : Redadas, el temor nuestro de cada día, por la cadena Univision
Jorge Cancino, Univision, 4 de febrero de 2016
“Conducido por los periodistas Félix De Bedout y María Antonieta Collins, este sábado 6 de febrero el programa mostrará el impacto de las batidas de inmigración en familias cuyos integrantes han llegado a Estados Unidos en busca de asilo.”

•   Buscan procesar más rápido a familias centroamericanas en tribunales de inmigración
Pilar Marrero, La Opinión, 8 de febrero de 2016
“Ordenan a jueces abrir espacio en sus calendarios para procesar a madres con niños centroamericanos que han sido arrestados en Estados Unidos tras escapar violencia en sus países.”

•   Obama Proposes $5 Million To Outfit Border Patrol Agents With Body Cameras
Adolfo Flores, BuzzFeed News, February 9, 2016
“President Obama’s latest budget proposal includes $5 million for body cameras for border patrol agents, an indication that an important issue for immigration activists has became a higher priority at the White House.”

•   After Recent ICE Raids, Sanctuary Movement Grows for Immigrants Here Illegally
Cindy Carcamo, Los Angeles Times, February 8, 2016
“Morris’ congregation is one of at least three in the Los Angeles area vowing in recent weeks to offer refuge to Central Americans with deportation orders — joining what advocates say is a growing number of pastors, preachers and nuns across the country in reviving the sanctuary movement.”

•   Supreme Court Immigration Ruling Could Stop the Intimidation of American Citizens
Kica Matos and Frank Sharry, Huffington Post, February 8, 2016
“But more directly, this case is about Cesar and Jonathan and the 6.3 million Americans who are the spouses and children of undocumented immigrants. The majority – 5.3 million – are the children of parents who came here without papers, fleeing war, violence and poverty the likes of which many of us in this country will never see.”

New Reports and Resources

•   Migration Through Mexico: A Humanitarian Emergency
Washington Office on Latin America, February 8, 2016
“WOLA has published an interactive map of Mexico’s southern border zone, an area that has become the site of a major U.S.-backed migration crackdown, raising serious humanitarian concerns.”

•   5 facts about Mexico and immigration to the U.S.
Jens Manuel Krogstad, Pew Research Center, February 11, 2016
 “[Over] the past decade, Mexican migration to the U.S. has slowed dramatically. Today, Mexico increasingly serves as a land bridge for Central American immigrants traveling to the U.S.”

•   US Refugee Crisis Raises Grave Human Rights Concern
Angela Wolfe and Simon Schatzberg, CIP Americas Program, February 9, 2016
“In the spring and summer of 2014, tens of thousands of unaccompanied children, mostly from Central America’s Northern Triangle (El Salvador, Guatemala and Honduras), crossed the United States’ southwest border and sparked a political and humanitarian crisis.”

•   [VIDEOS] Event Coverage: Central American Migrant Crisis: Managing Flows
Bipartisan Policy Center, February 10, 2016

•   [VIDEO] Refugees
Church World Service, February 8, 2016

•   Department of Homeland Security: The President’s Fiscal Year 2017 Budget
Jacinta Ma, National Immigration Forum, February 11, 2016
Summary of President Obama’s proposed budget for DHS.