HomeNewsBriefUS to Change Mexico Deportation Policy, Aims to Drive Down Border Violence
BRIEF

US to Change Mexico Deportation Policy, Aims to Drive Down Border Violence

MEXICO / 28 FEB 2012 BY EDWARD FOX EN

The United States Homeland Security secretary, Janet Napolitano, has annonced that the US government will change its deportation policy for illegal Mexican migrants, flying them to their place of origin in an effort to combat border violence.

Napolitano made the announcement at a press conference in Mexico City, explaining that the US will pilot its new program in April by providing air transportation to Mexicans rather than using its current policy of dropping them on the border in northern Mexico. In the new policy, the Mexican government will then be responsible for aiding the migrants' journey from the airport to their homes.

Napolitano said the new policy is a response to criminal organizations who often prey on migrants left stranded at the border, saying "We can jointly cut the link between criminal organizations and their prey and we can, and will, save lives." 

Mexican Interior Minister Alejandro Poire, who announced the program with Napolitano, stated that removing vulnerable Mexicans from border areas will help the fight against human trafficking.

Official figures from the US put the number of those deported through September 2011 at 400,00, a new record. Most of these were sent back to Mexico.

InSight Crime Analysis

Under the current deportation policy, the US in some cases actively tries to deport Mexicans via a different point of entry so as to prevent the migrants from being swallowed by human trafficking networks. However, this tactic can still be exploited by Mexican drug gangs, as a Los Angeles Times piece noted last year. As the paper pointed out, while some may be sent back via comparatively safer points of entry, others may be faced with having to travel via more dangerous corridors, such as those controlled by the Zetas, a group known to target migrants.

There is a second issue at play here, which has little to do with vulnerable migrants. Another class of deportees are ex-convicts who often join criminal groups upon return to Mexico. President Felipe Calderon came out in strong opposition last fall to the current policy, pointing to how it facilitated violence in the north of Mexico. Though not an unprecedented criticism -- InSight noted at the time that Mexican officials have been complaining for years against the policy -- it highlighted the other danger in the deportation policy.

share icon icon icon

Was this content helpful?

We want to sustain Latin America’s largest organized crime database, but in order to do so, we need resources.

DONATE

What are your thoughts? Click here to send InSight Crime your comments.

We encourage readers to copy and distribute our work for non-commercial purposes, with attribution to InSight Crime in the byline and links to the original at both the top and bottom of the article. Check the Creative Commons website for more details of how to share our work, and please send us an email if you use an article.

Was this content helpful?

We want to sustain Latin America’s largest organized crime database, but in order to do so, we need resources.

DONATE

Related Content

COLOMBIA / 26 OCT 2021

Two top police commanders in Colombia and Mexico have recently admitted to filtering sensitive information to drug traffickers while working…

COCA / 22 DEC 2020

President-elect Joe Biden wants to reset US-Latin American relations, but the Trump administration’s approach may leave scars.

EL SALVADOR / 15 FEB 2022

On March 2, 2021, El Salvador police announced an unexpected arrest: that of Hugo Armando Quinteros Mineros, alias “Flaco.” His…

About InSight Crime

LA ORGANIZACIÓN

Extensive Coverage of our Chronicles of a Cartel Bodyguard

23 SEP 2022

Our recent investigation, A Cartel Bodyguard in Mexico’s 'Hot Land', has received extensive media coverage.

THE ORGANIZATION

InSight Crime, American University Host Illegal Fishing Panel

19 SEP 2022

InSight Crime and the Center for Latin American & Latino Studies (CLALS) at American University discussed the findings of a joint investigation on IUU fishing at a September 9 conference.

THE ORGANIZATION

Impact on the Media Landscape

9 SEP 2022

InSight Crime’s first investigation on the Dominican Republic made an immediate impact on the Dominican media landscape, with major news outlets republishing and reprinting our findings, including in …

THE ORGANIZATION

InSight Crime Sharpens Its Skills

2 SEP 2022

Last week, the InSight Crime team gathered for our annual retreat in Colombia, where we discussed our vision and strategy for the next 12 months.  During the week, we also learned how to…

THE ORGANIZATION

Colombia’s Fragile Path to Peace Begins to Take Shape

26 AUG 2022

InSight Crime is charting the progress of President Gustavo Petro’s agenda as he looks to revolutionize Colombia’s security policy, opening dialogue with guerrillas, reforming the military and police, and…