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Immigration

Trump complains about a "massive inflow" of immigrants to the U.S. The numbers suggest otherwise.

The number of immigrants arriving to the southern U.S. border is lower than it's been in 40 years. When compared to numbers from 2000, detentions of undocumented immigrants who entered from Mexico were down 80% in 2017.
3 Abr 2018 – 03:08 PM EDT

President Donald Trump has spent three days warning about the "big caravans" of immigrants who want to enter the United States, demanding that Mexico and Congress stop the "large flows of people" to the southern border.

“Congress must immediately pass Border Legislation, use Nuclear Option if necessary, to stop the massive inflow of Drugs and People,” Trump tweeted. “Our country is being stolen!”

But Trump is missing key information. The inflow of immigrants across the border with Mexico is not massive. In fact, it has declined steadily and is at its lowest since 1975, according to official data.

The lowest number of migrants in 40 years
Last year there were 303,916 detentions of undocumented persons at the U.S.-Mexico border, the lowest number since 1975.

2000

1 750k

1986

1,643,679

1,615,844

detentions

detentions

1 500k

1 250k

1 000k

2017

750k

303,916

detentions

500k

1975

512,264

250k

detentions

0

1975

1980

1985

1990

1995

2000

2005

2010

2015

2000

1 750k

1986

1,643,679

1,615,844

detentions

detentions

1 500k

1 250k

1 000k

2017

750k

303,916

detentions

500k

1975

512,264

250k

detentions

0

1975

1980

1985

1990

1995

2000

2005

2010

2015

2000

1986

1,643,679

1,615,844

detentions

detentions

1 750k

1 500k

1 250k

1 000k

2017

750k

303,916

detentions

500k

1975

512,264

250k

detentions

0

1975

1980

1985

1990

1995

2000

2005

2010

2015

2000

1986

1,643,679

1,615,844

detentions

detentions

1 750k

1 500k

1 250k

1 000k

750k

2017

303,916

500k

detentions

1975

512,264

250k

detentions

0

1975

1980

1985

1990

1995

2000

2005

2010

2015

Fuente: United States Border Patrol | Univision Data


Since 2000, which was the year that saw the largest number of detentions on the border in the past 40 years, arrests have decreased 80%.

Last year border agents detained 303,916 people. In 2000 that number was 1,643,679.

Despite the data, Trump continues to warn the country of "large flows of people" entering the southern border "to take advantage of DACA." That is despite the fact that the government no longer even accepts new applicants to the DACA program, which benefits undocumented immigrants who entered the country as children over 10 years ago.

During the month of February, arrests of undocumented persons on the southern border increased 2.4%.

But that phenomenon is not an aberration. The Office of U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP), which is regularly congratulated by the president, explains that the slight increase in February is normal at this time of year.

"This is typical of migration patterns in the month of February," explains CBP.

Fewer Mexicans, more Central Americans

To a large extent, the reduction of migratory flows to the U.S. is explained by the smaller number of Mexicans now crossing the border.

In 2000, authorities detained 1.6 million Mexicans on the southern border. Last year that figure was 130,454 people, according to CBP data.

This coincides with figures from Mexico’s National Institute of Statistics and Geography (INEGI). Between 2008 and 2015, 43.5% fewer Mexicans left their country—from 64.1 to 36.2 per 10,000 inhabitants.

However, migrants from other countries–mainly El Salvador, Guatemala and Honduras–to the United States increased more than 500%.

Mexican immigrants by the numbers
Fewer Mexicans are crossing the U.S. through the southern border. Meanwhile, the number of Central Americans trying to reach the country is increasing.

1 750k

2000

1,615,081

detentions

1 500k

1 250k

1 000k

2017

750k

175,978

detentions

2017

500k

127,938

detentions

2000

28,598

250k

detentions

0

2000

2002

2004

2006

2008

2010

2012

2014

2016

Mexico

Other countries

1 750k

2000

1,615,081

detentions

1 500k

1 250k

1 000k

2017

750k

175,978

detentions

2017

500k

127,938

detentions

2000

28,598

250k

detentions

0

2000

2002

2004

2006

2008

2010

2012

2014

2016

Mexico

Other countries

1 750k

2000

1,615,081

detentions

1 500k

1 250k

1 000k

750k

2017

500k

175,978

detentions

2000

250k

28,598

2017

detentions

127,938

0

detentions

2000

2002

2004

2006

2008

2010

2012

2014

2016

Mexico

Other countries

1 750k

2000

1,615,081

detentions

1 500k

1 250k

1 000k

750k

2017

500k

175,978

detentions

2000

250k

28,598

2017

detentions

127,938

0

detentions

2000

2002

2004

2006

2008

2010

2012

2014

2016

Mexico

Other countries

Fuente: United States Border Patrol | Univision Data


2017 was the third year on record with more non-Mexican than Mexican immigrants arrested on the southern border: about 175,000.

In recent days, Trump has attacked Mexico for not stopping Central American migrants from passing through its borders on the way to the United States.

Trump tweeted about the group of more than 1,000 migrants - mostly Central Americans - who left Tapachula, Chiapas, about a week ago on their way to the U.S. border, referring to them as “caravans.”

“Mexico is doing very little, if not NOTHING, at stopping people from flowing into Mexico through their Southern Border, and then into the U.S. They laugh at our dumb immigration laws,” Trump wrote on Twitter.


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