25 Central American migrants killed in Mexico highway crash

A truck transporting a group of Central American migrants overturned Wednesday, killing 25 and injuring 29, according to the Attorney General's Office of the Mexican state of Chiapas, which borders Guatemala. Photo from Novedades de Tabasco/EPA-EFE

MEXICO CITY, March 8 (UPI) — A truck carrying about 50 Central American migrants careened off a highway in Mexico, killing 25 people and sending 29 to the hospital.

The crash occurred about 6 p.m. Thursday some 150 miles from Mexico’s border with Guatemala. The 3-ton Ford truck did not have license plates, according to a preliminary investigation opened by the Chiapas state prosecutor.

“We lament profoundly the deaths of Central American migrants in this accident,” said Maximiliano Reyes Zuniga, a spokesman for Mexico’s Ministry of Foreign Relations.

Mexico’s Chiapas state shares a border with Guatemala and is a primary route for Central American and migrants from other countries traveling north to reach the United States.

The precise nationalities of the dead and injured migrants is not yet known.

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Dozens of people were strewn around the overturned truck next to the highway, according to local press reports and tweets of photos from the scene.

First responders included Red Cross, civil protection officers, and municipal and state police officers.

Migrants in Mexico often face dangerous traveling conditions as they head north. A month ago, Mexican authorities in Chiapas found 234 migrants traveling in what they called “inhuman conditions” in trailers. At the end of last year in the neighboring states of Tabasco and Oaxaca, authorities found more than 200 migrants also traveling in trailers.

Following this latest crash, the government of Chiapas issued a civil protection alert for Central American migrants traveling through the state.

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