106 unaccompanied migrant children and teens returned to Guatemala
The minors were found inside an abandoned truck trailer in Mexico’s state of Veracruz on Sunday along with 237 other undocumented migrants
March 9, 2023 8:51am
Updated: March 9, 2023 8:51am
In one of the largest recent returns of unaccompanied minor migrants to their home country, more than 100 children and teenagers were sent back to Guatemala on Wednesday.
According to Guatemala’s migration institute, 106 minors aged 12 to 17 that were traveling without their families were sent back to the country.
"We are very concerned because we are seeing returns of children and teenagers increasing," said Wanda Aspuac, an official at Guatemala's migration institute.
The minors were found inside an abandoned truck trailer in Mexico’s state of Veracruz on Sunday along with 237 other undocumented migrants that were trying to make their way to the U.S.
The truck trailer was found without a driver on Sunday evening in the state of Veracruz along a route often used by smugglers to transport people from Mexico to the U.S. border.
Between January and March of this year, Guatemala has received more than 430 unaccompanied minor children sent from Mexico and the U.S. Most of the unaccompanied minors coming from Central America who reach the United States come from Guatemala, according to the U.S. data on migrant encounters at the U.S.-Mexico border.
Many of the children are sent by their parents or family members to make the perilous journey to the U.S. by themselves, hoping that they will have a better opportunity to stay in the country and reunite with family members who already live there.