News/mexico: Arrests Show Extent Of Human Smuggling, The News

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Subject: News/mexico: Arrests Show Extent Of Human Smuggling, The News
From: Melanie Orhant (morhant@igc.org)
Date: Thu Mar 16 2000 - 21:15:09 EST


                Arrests Show Extent Of Human Smuggling, The News

APwo 3-8-00 3:16 PM

   The undersecretary of Population and Immigration, Jose Angel Pescador
Osuna, on Tuesday announced that 2,500 people were arrested last year for
smuggling undocumented workers across the border between Mexico and the
United States, government news agency Notimex reported.
      The smugglers, also known as polleros, receive between 1,000 to 1,500
dollars from each individual successfully guided across the border, a trip
made by more than 200,000 Mexicans each year, Osuna said.
      Osuna said that Mexico needs to seek new forms of cooperation with
the United States to ensure that migrants' human and labor rights are
respected. Although diverse groups have expressed interest in bringing more
migrant workers into the United States legally, Osuna cautioned that a
previous official immigration accord between Mexico and the United States,
known as the bracero program, "left us with a bad experience." The bracero
program was established in 1942 to bring more Mexican workers to the United
States during World War II and lasted until 1964.
      Osuna said that the flow of undocumented workers and drug trafficking
are the two principal sources of tension between Mexico and the United
States.
      According to Osuna, the main causes of immigration are labor market
demands, wage differentials between the Mexico and the United States, and
family and social networks which support Mexican migrants.


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