The Attorney General's Office has been instructed to release figures on foreigners who were gunned down in Mexico from 2000 to 2013, the Institute for Access to Federal Information, or IFAI, said.

The decision by the IFAI, an independent agency, to order the release of the information was made after the AG's office said it would not provide the figures because they were "nonexistent."

The AG's office took this position even though foreigners, especially migrants, have been victims of the wave of drug-related violence that has plagued Mexico in recent years.

A woman seeking figures on the violent deaths of foreigners was instructed by the AG's office to make her request "to the Foreign Relations Secretariat and the state attorneys general" because the federal office did not have the information.

"The woman making the request was unhappy and filed a request for review with the IFAI, citing the various cooperation agreements signed by AG's office officials and the forensic anthropology team that committed the agency to release information about the migrants found in mass graves in Tamaulipas and Nuevo León" states, the IFAI said in a statement.

The information must be provided "by year, gender, nationality and age from the year 2000 to Oct. 7, 2013," the IFAI said.

Mexico is a transit country for the tens of thousands of migrants from Central and South America who try to enter the United States each year.

The migrants' trek is a dangerous one, with criminals and corrupt Mexican officials preying on them.

Gangs kidnap, exploit and murder migrants, who are often targeted in extortion schemes, Mexican officials say. 

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