77K APPLICATIONS FOR PROTECTION IN MEXICO SO FAR IN 2021
REGIONAL: MIGRANTS & REFUGEES
CENTRAL AMERICA & MEXICO
Mexican authorities dispersed a caravan of about 800 migrants, comprised mainly of people from Central America, Haiti, Venezuela and Cuba, that set out from the city of Tapachula in the southern Mexican state of Chiapas on the Guatemalan border, the fourth such caravan dispersed in just over a week.
Mexico’s migration and asylum systems are dealing with increased immigration through their southern border and the United States sending thousands detained at the US-Mexico border back to Mexico. The Mexican Comission for Refugee Assistance (COMAR) has fielded more than 77,000 applications for protection so far in 2021, with 55,000 coming in Tapachula, where shelters are full and protests over delayed processing times are growing.
The rising number of migrants entering from Colombia through the dangerous Darien jungle area in eastern Panama is leading to a corresponding rise in violence and sexual assault. Officials say they have received as many as 170 reports of rape from migrants in the last two months, adding that the real number of incidents is likely higher. Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF) and the Ministry of Health are on the ground in the province of Darien, providing medical attention and psychosocial support. Panama’s Attorney General’s Office indicate they are setting up a special prosecutor’s office in Darien to respond to the high number of reports of violence against the migrants.
So far in 2021, Panama has recorded more than 42,000 migrants entering through Darien, just over a quarter of all the migrants recorded since 2009. Per authorities in Colombia, there are about 14,000 migrants in the northern border community of Necoclí in the department of Antioquia who are awaiting entry into Panama, who are only allowing the entry of 500 migrants a day.
1M HECTARES OF LAND IN SANTA CRUZ, BOLIVIA, BURNED BY WILDFIRES
REGIONAL: NATURAL HAZARDS
Per Mexico’s seismological service, a 7.1-magnitude earthquake struck the city of Acapulco in the southern state of Guerrero on 7 September. The quake, with a shallow depth of 12 km, was felt across Guerrero, as well as the states of Oaxaca, Mexico State, Morelos and the capital of Mexico City.
Preliminary damage reports indicate minor damage and interruptions to power and communications networks, mostly in Guerrero and Mexico City. Guerrero authorities report 1 death.
Per Bolivia’s Forest Fire Early Warning System (SATIF), fires have consumed more than 1 million hectares in the eastern department of Santa Cruz, up from the 600,000 hectares reported the week of 20-26 August. There are currently 15 active fires in the department.
Authorities say there are about 400 people responding to the various fires. The Government has dispatched about 12.6 tons of relief supplies for distribution among 4,700 affected families in eight affected municipalities.