Drama in Mexico. Several migrants died in a fire early Tuesday in a detention center where they were held in Ciudad Juárez (North), on the border with the United States, local media reported.
An AFP journalist was able to see the firefighters and rescuers transporting several bodies under blankets in the parking lot of the National Institute for Migration (INM) located near the border. The fire started shortly before midnight Monday, prompting the mobilization in the early morning Tuesday of firefighters and dozens of ambulances.
Dozens of dead?
Reached by telephone by AFP, the INM confirmed the fire but refused to give any information on the victims. According to local media citing unidentified official sources, dozens of people are believed to have died. A rescuer who requested anonymity due to lack of permission to speak said that around 70 migrants, mostly Venezuelans, were at the site.
Vinagly, a Venezuelan, screams in despair outside the center where her 27-year-old husband was taken after his arrest. “They took him in an ambulance,” she says. She doesn’t know anything about her condition and complains that the center’s officials “don’t say anything”.
Ciudad Juárez, neighboring El Paso (Texas), is one of the border towns from which many undocumented migrants seek to reach the United States to seek asylum. Since 2014, around 7,661 migrants have died or disappeared en route to the United States, according to figures from the International Organization for Migration (IOM).