The massacre at San Fernando leaves its mark on migrants’ route through Mexico
by Marcia San Juan
Mexico City – Between August 22 and 23, 2010, members of the Los Zetas cartel murdered 72 migrants in San Fernando, Tamaulipas, after they refused to become paid assassins. It was the first massacre of its type carried out in Mexico by organized crime but it was not the last or the only one and almost three years later, conditions for Central Americans crossing this country in hopes of reaching the United States remain the same, marked by extortion, harassment, rape, kidnapping and murder.
The news reached the pages of the leading Mexican newspapers on August 25, two days later, after a survivor of the killings managed to arrive at an army control post and give details of the massacre.
The undocumented migrants – 58 men and 14 women, coming from El Salvador, Honduras, Guatemala, Brazil, Ecuador and Costa Rica – were traveling on a bus toward the United States when, as they reached San Fernando, in the north of the country, they were intercepted by members of Los Zetas, who proposed that they work for the cartel as paid killers, at a salary of about 1,000 dollars every two weeks. (more…)