San Salvador – Violations of Salvadoran migrants' human rights in Mexico rose 46 percent in the first half of this year, compared to the same period in 2010, Deputy Foreign Minister Juan Jose Garcia said.
"We have set up in the Foreign Ministry ... a center to monitor the human rights situation of migrants in transit (through Mexico), the crimes committed against them, and there has been an increase of 46 percent in the first six months, compared to the same period last year," Garcia told reporters Wednesday during a forum on migrants' rights.
"Sure enough ... the authorities on Mexican territory are demonstrating a sovereign inability to handle migrants, there is a lack of protection toward them," Central American University Human Rights Institute migrants' affairs coordinator Gilma Perez told Efe.
Salvadoran migrants' human rights are not just violated on "the route to the United States," Perez said, adding that migrants' rights were also being violated "in the United States, when they are discovered to have an irregular status" and are deported.
"The deportation numbers this year have remained pretty similar to those in the previous year and the figure continues to be pretty high for a population that continues being forced to return to its country but has no options here in El Salvador," Perez said.
Between 70 and 85 people are deported daily, with the vast majority of expulsions taking place in the United States and Mexico, Salvadoran Migration Service director Ruben Alvarado told Efe.
A total of 17,642 Salvadorans were deported from the United States and Mexico between Jan. 1 and Aug. 30, or 3,492 fewer than during the same period last year, Salvadoran Migration Service figures show.
"Before calling on friendly countries to stop violating the rights of migrants," officials in El Salvador should "call on themselves ... to look at what is good and what is bad" in "impacting in some way the decision of Salvadorans to emigrate," Perez said.
El Salvador's National Assembly approved legislation to protect migrants and their families in March, but the law has not been implemented yet.
The implementing regulations "should be ready in September," Garcia said, without providing a specific date.
El Salvador's laws "have no life" and will continue to be "dead letters" until they are enforced, opposition Nationalist Republican Alliance, or ARENA, lawmaker Margarita Escobar said.
Thousands of migrants, both Mexicans and foreigners, try to enter the United States each year via land routes from Mexico.
An estimated 300,000 Central Americans undertake the dangerous journey across Mexico each year on their way to the United States.
The trek is a dangerous one, with criminals and corrupt Mexican officials preying on the migrants.
Gangs kidnap, exploit and murder migrants, who are often targeted in extortion schemes, Mexican officials say.
Central American migrants follow a long route that takes them into Chiapas state, which is on the border with Guatemala, walking part of the way or riding aboard freight trains, buses and cargo trucks.