Between January and September, apprehensions decreased compared to the same period in 2021. At the end of the fiscal year, the country represented only 4% of arrests.
According to statistics from the Office of Customs and Border Protection (CBP), El Salvador reduced irregular migrant flows on the border between the United States and Mexico by 22.04% from January to September 2022, compared to the same period in 2021.
From January to September of this year, 68,691 encounters were registered, while in 2021 there were 88,105. In addition, the country only accounted for 4.09% of the apprehensions and expulsions of the 2.38 million encounters in fiscal year 2022.
US authorities reported 5,810 encounters between Salvadorans in January (3,580 in 2021); in February, 7,146 (5,599 in 2021); in March, 8,403 (9,475 in 2021); in April, 8,355 (11,043); in May, 8,980 (10,462); in June, 9,123 (11,582); in July, 7,952 (12,719); in August, 6,675 (12,692); and in September, 6,247 encounters (10,953 in 2021).
Meanwhile, during fiscal year 2022, the detention of Mexicans amounted to 808,339 immigrants; that of Guatemalans, to 231,566; that of Hondurans, to 213,023, and that of Salvadorans, to 97,030 people. The cumulative number of other nationalities was 1,028,986.
According to the statistics, from August to September alone, the apprehensions and expulsions of immigrants from El Salvador fell by 6.4%.
For the Salvadoran government, the reductions are the product of the articulated work of the institutions to guarantee voluntary, safe, and legal migration.
The Deputy Minister of Diaspora and Human Mobility, Cindy Mariella Portal, shared that “These figures reflect that the policies implemented by the government of President Nayib Bukele focused on building opportunities for the country’s development continue to bear fruit, addressing the structural causes of irregular migration.”
The Migration Policy Institute (MPI, for its acronym in English) points out that there is a new reality that positions Mexico, Guatemala, Honduras, Cuba, and Venezuela as the five countries with the most irregular migratory flows at the border during fiscal year 2022, and that these populations alone accounted for 71% of total apprehensions and expulsions.
The report highlights that mobilizations towards the United States from countries such as Cuba and Venezuela are increasing. At least 43% of encounters involved migrants from outside of Mexico and northern Central America, a significant rise from just 4% five years ago.
The encounters include the multiple times that migrants tried to cross without authorization and were expelled by the Title 42 policy, enacted in 2020 to stop irregular movements in the context of the COVID-19 pandemic.
The Venezuelan American Alliance organization denounced that the Mexican government “is incapable of handling the humanitarian crisis generated by the implementation of Title 42.” The Venezuelans were “held in detention centers for several days. They were returned to Mexico without explanation and without the right to request asylum,” it was published in a statement. “Many of them live on the streets of various cities in Mexico without any support from the Mexican government and are exposed to inhumane circumstances,” she said.