Since January 2019, nearly 68,000 asylum seekers have been ordered to wait in Mexico as their cases make their way through the U.S. courts system. The wait can take years, and it can often be deadly.

After Mexico boasted its highest number of deportations ever in 2019, a group of Mexican researchers and advocates set out to document just how extensive the cooperation has been between the United States and Mexico and how this unofficial collaboration allows dangerous policies like the “Remain in Mexico” program to flourish.

Alicia Moncada, a human rights investigator at the Fundación para la Justicia y el Estado Democrático de Derecho, a Mexican NGO that promotes access to justice, and Gretchen Kuhner, director of IMUMI, The Institute for Women in Migration, and their colleagues set out to investigate the effects of the program in their own country. They spent the last year traveling and speaking with asylum seekers living in shelters and the streets in towns along the U.S.-Mexico border. They also connected with family members of migrants living in the U.S. whose loved ones were kidnapped, assaulted, and even murdered while they waited in Mexico.

Photo by IMUMI – Instituto para las Mujeres en la Migración.

What they found was that Mexico’s own immigration policies, under a leftist president that had once campaigned for migrants’ rights, mirrored those of the Trump administration. Even, they say, in violation of Mexico’s own guaranteed constitutional protections.

In this episode of Latino USA, Maria Hinojosa talks to Alicia and Gretchen about their findings, including some surprising discoveries, and why it is so important for the voices of Mexican researchers —living where U.S. policies are actually playing out— to be heard as President Biden takes office.

Featured image by IMUMI – Instituto para las Mujeres en la Migración.


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2 thoughts on “In The Mouth Of The Wolf

  1. Dear María Hinojosa:
    I just listened to En la Boca del Lobo program and I was very disappointed. I live in Juárez and I can tell you that the migrant situation in the border and in Mexico has many sides. Not all so-called immigrants as well as not all so-called human rights reporters are the same. Intersections exist. I did not see them played in this report. I downloaded the report and I will read it, but knowing that one of the authors works for Reforma is discouraging. Reforma is not a trustable newspaper. It is like Fox News, with more cache´. Being an immigrant is not enough to portray the truth, as you have corroborated several times. For some, being a minority does not mean commitment to work for our people. Again, intersections are important. Hope you can interview the Casa del Migrante en Juárez or the clinic-hotel that is taking care of immigrants in Juárez. There is more to see and understand. Saludos.

  2. As a citizen of the United States of America this is a very horrific thing to hear considering how much we think of our country as being humanitarians and helping other nations. I find this extremely troubling and hope that there is some resolution that is more favorable since there are lives in the balance I can only imagine the horror that people are living through and it breaks my heart.

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