26 December 2013| last updated at 04:28PM

47,000 migrants killed in Mexico past 6 years

MEXICO CITY: The Institute for Women in Migration said that in the past six years, over 47,000 migrants died while travelling through Mexico, La Jornada newspaper reported.

The organisation, founded in 2010, estimated that about 8,800 of the dead migrants have not been unidentified.

The institute is a civil organisation that promotes the rights of women in migration, either in transit through the Mexican territory or residing in Mexico or the United States.

Meanwhile, Alejandro Solalinde, a priest and director of a shelter for migrants in Oaxaca, Hermanos en el Camino, said at least 10,000 Central American migrants are missing, although other estimates put that number as high as 70,000.

Mostly from Central America, many migrants who attempt to reach the United States are helpless in a reality in which they can be robbed, extorted, beaten, raped, tortured, kidnapped and murdered, the victims of criminal gangs and corrupt officials.

Jorge A. Bustamante, founder of the Colegio de la Frontera Norte, said that the Mexican government has not reacted to the phenomenon of migration, the La Jornada article said.

Bustamante, who was UN special rapporteur for human rights of migrants in the 2005-2011 period, added that trying to explain violence only as a question of organised crime, as the previous government did, is a misconception.

But the agony of migrants does not end when they finally manage to cross the fortified US border, which includes a dividing wall and a powerful military patrol with sophisticated equipment. From there, they have to face new threats, he said. -- BERNAMA

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