IMMIGRATION

Mexican migrant kills himself after being deported from the US

Suicide comes on same day that Homeland Security releases tough new measures against immigration

A Mexican migrant who had been recently deported from the US committed suicide on Tuesday by jumping off a bridge near the border crossing of San Ysidro, which connects Tijuana and San Diego. Mexican authorities have confirmed that José Luis Jiménez, 44, had been deported last week. Lying next to his body was a plastic bag containing personal items, such as those usually handed out by US immigration officials during repatriation procedures.

The border crossing of San Ysidro, in Tijuana
The border crossing of San Ysidro, in TijuanaCuarto Oscuro

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According to eyewitness reports cited in local media, the man screamed out in distress over being returned to Mexico, shortly before jumping at around 9.30am local time.

The incident took place on the same day that the Department of Homeland Security issued documents detailing Trump’s new deportation procedures, which expand the pursuit to nearly every irregular migrant who has been in the country less than three years.

The guidelines include an order “to hire an additional 5,000 border agents and to empower state and local law enforcement to support federal enforcement of immigration law, to the maximum extent permitted by law.

Mexico has been a target of Trump’s from the beginning, both in migratory and in trade issues

“All of those in violation of the immigration laws may be subject to enforcement proceedings, up to and including removal from the United States,” reads the fact sheet released on Tuesday.

There are an estimated 11 million undocumented immigrants in the US, half of them from Mexico.

“We have still not registered a considerable increase in deportations, but this event illustrates the risks to come. Given the wage differences, and the cases of people who have been living in the US for a long time, these measures will result in great desperation,” said José María Ramos, a researcher at the migration studies center Colegio de la Frontera Norte (Colef).

Mexico has been a target of Trump’s from the beginning, both in migratory and in trade issues. Yet for the last five years, more Mexicans have been returning to their home country from the US than have been entering. In 2014, the migration balance showed a record 140,000 more exits than entries. And the deportation of undocumented migrants – most of them Mexican – fell for the second year in a row. The total number of removals in 2015 was the lowest since 2007, according to official immigration statistics.

English version by Susana Urra.

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