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Only 1 in 5 applicants are considered refugees in Mexico – El Sol de México

In the first two months of 2024, The Mexican Commission for Refugee Assistance (Comar) granted refugee status to 3,959 people in the context of mobility. This figure is only a fifth of the total number of applicants who turned to Comar in the same period.

Between January and February of this year, the proportion of approved refugee applications in relation to the total number of requests exceeded that of previous years.

For example, in 2023, the year in which the migratory flow in Mexico registered its highest historical numbers, Comar received 140,948 refugee requests and only 21,000 people in mobility situations received refuge status. This is approximately 14 percent of the total applications.

The number of asylum applications approved by Comar is a small number compared to the number of people who entered Mexico irregularly and who fled their countries for reasons linked to violence.

Between January and December of last year, the Migration Policy, Registration and Identity of Persons Unit (UPMRIP) of The Ministry of the Interior (Segob) registered 782,176 events involving undocumented people.

For his part, the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) revealed that more than half of the migrants left their countries of origin for reasons such as violence, insecurity or threats.

In the Protection Monitoring Report in Mexico 2023 “The Impact of Forced Displacement on Human Mobility”, the UNHCR stated that 6 out of 10 people declared that their lives would be at risk if they returned to their country of origin.

“This data reinforces the possibility that the majority of people who enter Mexico irregularly could have international protection needs,” the document states.

With this, it can be estimated that at least 436 thousand people in the context of irregular mobility who passed through our country last year, could be in need of refuge or asylum.

According to the Law on Refugees, Complementary Protection and Political Asylum, there are three cases for the State to provide refuge to migrants. Well-founded fears of persecution, and risks or threats of generalized violence, are the main causes.

The same legislation establishes that refugee status guarantees that the Mexican State complies with principles such as non-refoulement, non-discrimination, respect for the best interests of children, family unity, avoiding sanctions for irregular entry and confidentiality.

In a context in which Mexico has positioned itself as one of the three countries, globally, with the most refugee requeststhe UNHCR has denounced the lack of resources so that Comar can process one hundred percent of the refugee requests it receives.

Data from the 2024 Federation Expenditure Budget They point out that while Comar has a budget of just over 51 million pesos, the Mexican State allocates more than two billion to its immigration policy.

The National Migration Institute (INM) This year it received more than 1,897 million pesos. Meanwhile, to the Coordination for Comprehensive Care of the Migration on the Southern Border It was assigned a budget of 65.4 million pesos, and UNPMRIP, 47.9 million pesos.

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