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Mexico finds dozens of starving S. Asia migrants

August 16, 2019

Mexican authorities have rescued 65 migrants from South Asia who were found starving and severely dehydrated. Once their nationalities are identified and confirmed they will be sent back to their countries.

National Guard members on a street in Mexico
Image: Imago Images/Agencia EFE

Federal police have found 65 severely dehydrated and starving migrants from Bangladesh, India, and Sri Lanka on a highway in the coastal state of Veracruz.

Mexico's Public Safety Department said on Thursday that the migrants endured a long and difficult journey in an attempt to reach the US border.

"It is very rare to find migrants of this type of nationalities, they are regularly Central American and even Cuban," said an INM source.

After Mexican authorities provided the migrants with medical assistance, food and water, they recounted their journey.

Read more: Scale of Mexico's migrant influx 'completely unexpected'

The journey: Qatar to Mexico

The migrants had flown from a Qatar airport on 24 April to Turkey and then to Colombia. They then moved through Ecuador, Panama and Guatemala before reaching Mexico.

Upon arrival in Mexico, they traveled by boat through the Coatzacoalcos River to the country's northern border. There is confusion as to why they opted to embark on the river as it does not lead anywhere close to the US border.

Read more: Mexico sends 6,000 National Guardsmen to control migrants at Guatemalan border

While on the river, they ran out of supplies and lost their way.

Agents who had been conducting security patrols on the Nuevo Teapa-Cosoleacaque highway discovered the migrants and immediately proceeded to help them.

At least three drug cartels operate in the area.

The migrants were later transferred to a migratory center in the municipality of Acayucan, where their legal status will be defined.

After their nationalities are recognized, they will be given assistance to return to their countries.

Read more: In Mexico, migrants must choose between bad and worse

The Mexican government reported on Wednesday that the country has intercepted 19,005 endangered migrants since the 7 June immigration agreement with the US.  Many attempt crossing the border in overcrowded buses and cargo trucks.

mvb/rc (AP, EFE)

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