Plan aims to save US-born children in Mexico from legal limbo

09/20/16 The Guardian

education - school childrenA new scheme to ease bureaucratic obstacles blocking access to health and education for hundreds of thousands of American-born children living in Mexico has been launched by the US and Mexican governments.

About 550,000 children born in the US are currently living across Mexico as a result of an increased number of deportations and voluntary repatriations driven by the US economic downturn and family obligations. These children face an array of legal and social difficulties assimilating into their new lives, including language and culture barriers, bullying, mental health problems and long delays getting into school.

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Struggles, Not Protection, Greet Central American Refugees in Mexico

19/09/16 The Wire 

immigrationOn September 19 and 20, world leaders will convene at the UN General Assembly for the first-ever Summit for Refugees and Migration. Although focusing primarily on the refugee crisis in Syria, the summit provides an opportunity to reflect on a humanitarian crisis that persists in southern Mexico.

In the summer of 2014, 70,000 Central American children arrived at the US-Mexico border, seeking refuge from the life-threatening conditions they faced in their home countries of Guatemala, El Salvador and Honduras.

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The Crumbling Case for a Mexican Border Wall

09/06/2016 The New York Times

Border fenceIs there actually a case for the Wall?

Donald Trump’s boast to build a “big, beautiful” wall along the southern border clearly provided a lift to his candidacy, arguably delivering him the Republican presidential nomination. Along with his promise to deport millions of immigrants who are living in the United States without legal authorization, it remains the leitmotif of his campaign, despite occasional bursts of softer rhetoric.

Mr. Trump is not wrong that immigration from Mexico and other countries in the poorer south over the last quarter-century has injured some American workers who competed with immigrants in the job market. It is not his concern alone; similar fears are shared by organized labor and others on the left of the political spectrum. Improbable as this may sound, the question he raises is legitimate.

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Mexico reclaims migrant-shuttling ‘The Beast’ railroad concession

08/23/16 Reuters

migrants1Mexico’s Communications and Transport Ministry said on Tuesday it had taken over a concession to a southern railroad, whose trains are known locally as “The Beast,” which thousands of Central American migrants have used to hitch rides to the United States.

The ministry scrapped the concession, which had belonged to the Ferrocarriles Chiapas-Mayab rail company, on the grounds of “public interest, public usage and national security,” it said in a statement, without elaborating.

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‘A perfect piñata’: why disdain for Trump is a plus for Mexico’s government

06/23/16 The Guardian

DonaldTrumpPinataIn Mexico, Donald Trump has been mocked, vilified and – in piñata form – beaten to smithereens. He has inspired scorn, foreboding and a signature taco dish withlots of tongue, a little bit of brains and pig’s snout.

The presumptive Republican nominee’s comments on Mexican migrants, his threats to build a border wall and finance it with remittance payments have roused powerful emotions, not least bewilderment: the real estate mogul’s rise came as polls showed that Mexico’s historic anti-Americanism had started to diminish.

Trump appears to have changed that. “We used to view Americans as somehow distant, somehow weird, somehow unrelated to us, sometimes insensitive to what we think and do,” says Manuel Molano, deputy director of the Mexican Institute for Competitiveness, a thinktank. “But this is really something else.”

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Donald Trump’s Immigration Plan: Big Promises, Bigger Doubts

5/19/16 New York Times

Donald_Trump)Big promises are to be expected from presidential candidates, but reality often intrudes. The elder George Bush broke the “no new taxes” pledge that helped lead to his election. And Barack Obama’s administration has yet to live up to his prediction that his nomination would go down in history as the moment “when the rise of the oceans began to slow and our planet began to heal.”

Donald J. Trump’s vow to restore what he says is America’s lost luster, while perhaps not as flowery, comes with campaign promises that are equally grandiose. But Mr. Trump, the presumptive Republican nominee, has typically provided scant details on how he might make good on his promises — and ambitious ideas, even the concrete kind, do not always add up.

Central to Mr. Trump’s campaign, and to his national security strategy, is his intent to clamp down on illegal immigration, using a vast deportation “force” to relocate people to the other side of a wall, funded by Mexico, that would stretch nearly the length of the southern border.

Mr. Trump has suggested he will flesh out his ideas in a forthcoming speech. But experts across many fields who have analyzed his plans so far warn that they would come at astronomical costs — whoever paid — and would in many ways defy the logic of science, engineering and law.

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Apprehensions of Mexican migrants at U.S. borders reach near-historic low

4/14/2016 Pew Research Center

Pew_Research_Center_logoThe number of Mexican migrants apprehended at U.S. borders in fiscal 2015 dropped to the lowest levels in nearly 50 years, according to U.S. Border Patrol data. This change comes after a period in which net migration of Mexicans to the U.S. had fallen to lows not seen since the 1940s.

This decline in apprehensions coincides with recently released estimates by Mexico’s top statistical agency, which show that the rate at which Mexicans migrated to the U.S. and other countries – including both legal and unauthorized immigrants – has held steady for the past five years, after a dramatic drop during the Great Recession.

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