(Mexico City) Mexican President Andrés Manuel Lopez Obrador again called on the United States to spend more money on preventing illegal immigration on Friday after 39 migrants were killed in a fire in a detention center in Ciudad Juárez.
Americans want to solve “social problems with the sole use of force and they don’t deal with the causes,” the Mexican president said during his daily press conference, ahead of his scheduled midday arrival in Ciudad Juárez, in northern Mexico, on the Texas border.
He recalled that his country had devoted $100 million to social programs in El Salvador, Honduras and Guatemala, which he said helped prevent the departure of migrants to the United States.
He claims to have constantly asked Washington to do the same, to no avail: “Neither with President Trump have we achieved that goal nor now with President Joe Biden.”
The Mexican head of state, however, acknowledged that a temporary visa program adopted by President Biden had made it possible to “considerably” reduce the migratory flow.
Mexican authorities on Friday confirmed the arrest of a migrant accused of starting the fire by setting fire to mattresses to protest a possible deportation.
So far, the Attorney General’s office has announced the arrest of five people in the investigation opened for “homicide” after the death in the night from Monday to Tuesday of 39 migrants under federal control, without however specifying if this migrant was one of those people.
Local media say he is a Venezuelan national.
The center’s security personnel — officials and security guards — did nothing to open the cell, according to the prosecution.
Among the dead are 18 nationals from Guatemala, seven from El Salvador and Venezuela, six from Honduras and one Colombian.
Twenty-seven people were also injured, some of them in very serious condition.