Central American migrants are upset that Mexican officials are yanking people trying to get on the freight train known as “The Beast” in Southern Mexico. Migrants risk their lives and limbs to hop on the trains that bring them near the U.S. Mexico border.
According to the Associated Press, Mexican officials “have pulled 6,000 migrants” off “The Beast” during various raids, causing them to flee “to the woods and low jungle.”
“We won’t allow in any way for them to board the trains,” a Mexican official in charge of the country’s southern border said on local radio, according to the Associated Press. In addition, Mexican officials said that the nearly 6,000 “migrants were from Guatemala, Honduras and El Salvador and had been returned to their countries.”
As the Associated Press noted, “Mexican officials say the raids seek to ensure migrants’ safety, arguing that they often fall or are pushed off the train by criminal gangs that kidnap, rape, kill and extort money,” but migrants intent on coming to America are having none of it. They reportedly jeered when they heard those claims.
Another migrant said officials “come looking for anyone who has a tattoo” and some Mexican citizens have reportedly even been detained in raids.
Mexican officials have also announced plans to speed up “The Beast” to prevent people from jumping on it as U.S. officials expect another surge at the border when the summer temperatures cool down. Since October of last year, there have been at least 63,000 illegal immigrant juveniles who have been detained at the border. Federal authorities expect at least 150,000 more in the next fiscal year.