10/23 BorderInfo: AZ Vilantes Attacck M irgants, Unemployment Up in Ciudad Juárez
- 1) Vigilantes intimidating illegal border crossers, activists say
FRANCISCO MEDINA/Tucson Citizen
Oct. 22, 2002
Members of a human rights group here are demanding that law enforcement officials take action against vigilantes whom they say are terrorizing border crossers who enter the United State illegally.
Several groups of U.S. citizens reportedly have been patrolling roads and ranch areas along Arizona's border with Mexico to discourage border crossers with a show of force, notifying the Border Patrol of illegal border crossers.
Derechos Humanos members say the men are intimidating border crossers with their weapons and threats "We call for immediate dismantling of those terrorist organizations and an immediate halt to the murders, the continued gross violations of human rights and civil liberties," said Isabel Garcia, co-chair of the Coalición de Derechos Humanos, at a noon news conference yesterday.
Two migrants were killed last week near the rural community of Red Rock, 32 miles northwest of Tucson when shots were fired into a group of about a dozen border crossers resting in the shade near a stock pond.
Law enforcement officials say they suspect the gunmen were competing migrant smugglers called "coyotes."
Garcia said yesterday, "To allow such (vigilante) operations to go on will only serve as a green light to racists and vigilante type! s who mistakenly blame poor immigrants for the havoc that failed border policies have created."
She read from a prepared statement issued by Derechos Humanos and the Alianza Indigena Sin Fronteras, which co-sponsored the news conference.
"All indications at this time point to either smugglers or vigilantes as the responsible parties," Garcia said.
The statement said vigilante groups have repeatedly gone out of their way to twist facts and distort political realities to promote their agendas.
Raúl Grijalva, the Democratic candidate for Congressional District 7, spoke at the event and called for the federal government to investigate the killings near Red Rock and! determine if the victims' civil rights were violated.
Grijalva also called for hearings between U.S. and Mexican officials on border violence.
After the news conference, Grijalva said more action is required by U.S. and Mexican governments on border issues.
He said the state of the Mexican economy leaves many in Mexico with no alternative but to seek work north of the border, even though getting here is dangerous.
2) FNS: Unemployment Up in Ciudad Juárez, Down in El Paso
Date: 10/23/2002 11:50:20 AM Pacific Daylight Time
Unemployment in Ciudad Juárez rose from 2.4% in August, 2002 to 2.8% in September, according to figures released by the Mexican statistical institute INEGI. Despite the rise in unemployment, the city still ranked 18th in Mexico in new job creation, due in part to the opening of nine new businesses in the city. However, the new jobs created were not enough to offset job losses.
The Ciudad Juárez newspaper El Diario also cited Texas Workforce Commission figures that showed that El Paso's unemployment rate fell over the same period from 8.5% in August, 2002 to 8.3% in September. The fall in unemployment was due in part to the beginning of the school year at which time school-service companies hire additional employees to meet the needs of the educational system.
However, during that same time period, El Paso lost 100 manufacturing jobs. A clothing manufacturer also announced in mid-October that it would fire its 1,200 workers.
In Cd. Juárez, the Instituto Mexicano del Seguro Social saw a drop in the number of people for which it provides health care. In August, 2002 it had insured 349,874 people. By September, this number had fallen by 256 people to 349,618.
Source: El Diario, October 18, 2002. Article by Rocío Gallegos and Julián Reséndiz.
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