Some 70 Haitian migrants returned to their country on Wednesday from Mexico. 41 men, 16 women and 13 children left Villahermosa, in the state of Tabasco (south-east) for Port-au-Prince.

Their return was organized as part of a voluntary return program implemented by Mexico and Haiti, said the Mexican Migration Institute (INM). The two countries have agreed to “begin the assisted and voluntary return of migrants from Mexico to their country of origin,” according to the INM.

Stranded at the US border

The migrants concerned are in Mexico City and in the states of Hidalgo, Mexico City and Tabasco. Over the past three months, tens of thousands of Haitians have crossed the Latin American continent, sometimes from Chile and Brazil, in an attempt to reach the United States and seek asylum there.

This Friday, migrants massed in makeshift camps located on both sides of the border between Mexico and the United States left the scene, after Washington began deportations by plane from Texas. Faced with the American refusal to welcome them, many of them chose to stay in Mexico, rather than return to Haiti, the poorest country in the Americas.

The Mexican Commission for Refugees is currently processing asylum applications from around 13,000 Haitians, the Foreign Minister said on Tuesday. But many Haitians who have arrived in the country cannot apply for refugee status because they have already obtained it in other countries.

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