Mexican authorities found 49 of the migrants who were kidnapped this week on a bus in the municipality of Matehuala, in northern Mexicoincluding victims from Venezuela, Honduras, Brazil, Cuba, Haiti and El Salvador.
“All were transferred to the delegation of the National Institute of Migration (INM) in San Luis Potosí (state of central-northern Mexico). These migrants, the 49 migrants, are 23 men, 15 women, six boys and five girls,” explained Luis Cresencio Sandoval, Secretary of National Defense.
In the morning government conference, the Army chief specified that “the nationalities are seven from Venezuela, 19 from Honduras, two from Brazil, one from Cuba, 14 from Haiti and six from El Salvador.”
The kidnapping of the migrants occurred on Tuesday, according to prosecutors in San Luis Potosí and the neighboring state of Nuevo León, which at that time estimated the number of foreigners kidnapped at 50.
The last finding, of 33 people, occurred early Thursday morning at kilometer 30 of federal highway 57, on the border of San Luis Potosí and Nuevo León, Sandoval explained.
“Some were found walking and others in some facilities, in some houses that were there in the area. We have no detainees, but (investigations) continue. The migrants will obviously give us some data that can help us identify the people who did this,” he said.
The secretary indicated that “the main concern” is to find the drivers of the bus in which the migrants were traveling, but refused to detail the fact further.
“The first migrants gave us the information that they had arrived at a gas station to refuel, and from there they had been approached by members of organized crime, that was the only information that had been obtained initially,” Sandoval said.
The Matehuala area has aroused concern from the Government of Mexico due to the presence of kidnapping gangs that have attacked migrants transiting the country to the United States.
Mexican President Andrés Manuel López Obrador acknowledged on Wednesday that this latest event is possibly linked to the kidnapping of 121 migrants that occurred in early April in the same region.
Sandoval explained this Thursday that there is a deployment of 650 elements, including the Army and the National Guard, who “follow this operation to continue looking for any other migrants or people who are in this situation.”
The fact reflects the unprecedented migratory flow of the regionwith more than 2.76 million undocumented people intercepted by the United States at the border with Mexico in fiscal year 2022.