Updated 03:32 PM EDT, Wed, Sep 23, 2020

Syrian Refugees & Latin Americans Turn to Human Traffickers to Enter the U.S. Border

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Central American migrants are braving unsafe conditions in their attempt to reach the United States through Mexico.

According to Fox News Latino, migrants from Central America mostly travel by themselves with the constant threat of accidents, organized crimes, and corrupt law enforcement officials snapping at their heels.

Aside from Central America, there's also an outpouring of migrants from Syria, Cuba, and India. These new migrants also face plenty of threats in their journey, often turning to human traffickers and paying them large amounts of money to ensure safe passage, Fox News Latino further reported.

With the aid of human smugglers or a "coyote," migrants avoid encounters with gangs of kidnappers, extortion, accidents, and human rights abuses at the hands of police and government officials, the news outlet added.

Last weekend, five Syrian refugees turned themselves in to the Border Patrol in Laredo, Texas, Fox News Latino reported. This comes only days after six Syrians with stolen Greek passports were apprehended in Honduras and Costa Rica. All of them appear to be heading to the U.S. to seek refuge from violence.

Migrants from Nepal, Somalia, Eritrea, Ethiopia, and Pakistan now frequently travel the long detour through Latin America to enter the U.S., a route that Latin Americans have been using for numerous years, The Guardian reported. The number of Syrian migrants peaked since President Bashar al-Assad's rise to power in 2011, and has climbed up higher as civil war worsened in the country.

"Over the past decade, Latin America has definitely become a route of entry to the US for Asian and African migrants," said Ernesto Rodríguez, a migration expert at Mexico Autonomous Institute of Technology (ITAM), as quoted in The Guardian's report.

More Cubans have also attempted to reach the U.S. since the restoration of diplomatic ties between Washington and Havana. Fox News Latino reported from U.S. authorities that the number of Cuban migrants this year has risen 80 percent compared to 2014. Thousands of Cubans have been stranded on the border between Costa Rica and Nicaragua for a week now because the latter's government refuses to let them pass.

The increasing volume of migrants is becoming a serious concern in Latin America, prompting officials to hold an emergency meeting tackling the possibility of security threats, The Guardian wrote.

A U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement official in Colombia referred to the smuggling groups as a "federation of independent operators" who transfer migrants off to each other, with payments for each shift a requirement, the news outlet added. Colombian investigators found that the trip from Asia or Africa to the U.S. through these routes can cost as much as $12,000.

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