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Texas: More than 50 people die in migrant truck tragedy

  • Jo Siedlecka

Trump's Separation Wall - Image Columbans

Trump's Separation Wall - Image Columbans

In one of the worst incidents so far this year, 46 people were found dead crammed in an abandoned airless truck near San Antonio Texas yesterday. Sixteen more people, including children, were taken to hospital - five of those have now died. The victims are migrants trying to get into the United States from Mexico. Police said someone at the scene was alerted to the situation by a cry for help shortly before 6pm on Monday. The survivors were "hot to the touch" and suffering from heat stroke and heat exhaustion.

San Antonio, which is 250km (150 miles) from the US-Mexico border, is a major transit route for people smugglers.

President Joe Biden said the "tragic loss of life" was "horrific and heartbreaking." San Antonio Mayor Ron Nirenberg said: "They had families... and were likely trying to find a better life. It's nothing short of a horrific, human tragedy."

Pope Francis tweeted: "I sorrowfully heard the news of the tragedy of the #migrants in Texas and #Melilla. Let us #PrayTogether for these brothers and sisters who died following their hope of a better life; and for ourselves, may the Lord might open our hearts so these misfortunes never happen again."

Cynthia Gonzalez, Advocacy Coordinator for the St Columban Mission for Justice, Peace and Ecology said: "The news from San Antonio that nearly 50 migrants died inside a semi-truck once again reminds our nation of the cruel consequences of our unjust immigration system. Once again, the surviving families, as well as the communities impacted by this injustice, must struggle to process their loved one's untimely death because they were simply trying to build a dignified life.

"Policies like Title 42 and 'Remain in Mexico,' as well as the militarization of the US/MX border, prevent migrants from accessing their fundamental right to seek safety in our country. By creating a policy labyrinth that is nearly impossible to navigate, we force migrants into increasingly desperate situations that often make them even more vulnerable to danger and criminal abuse. What happened in San Antonio is another reminder that an immigration system built without justice and mercy kills."

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