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Nearly 200 US-bound migrants found packed into bottom of truck

More than 300 Central American men, women and children were taken into custody as part of the operation.

Border Mexico - USA The Mexico-US border, pictured in October 2017 DPA / PA Images DPA / PA Images / PA Images

MORE THAN 300 Central American men, women and children who were being smuggled to the United States without water or food have been taken into custody by the Mexican authorities, according to officials.

The largest group – 198 people crammed into the bottom of a truck – was found in Tamaulipas in the northeast, just below the Texas border, Mexican immigration enforcement officials said.

The migrants from Guatemala, Honduras and El Salvador “were travelling in grossly overcrowded conditions without enough ventilation, food or water”, they said in a statement.

Among the many child migrants, 55 were with their parents or relatives, while 24 were making the dangerous journey alone.

Just a week ago, another 174 Central Americans were caught in operations in the Mexican states of Coahuila and Tamaulipas.

Amnesty International recently reported that Mexico deports thousands of Central Americans without taking into account their potential rights to treatment as refugees, such as when they are persecuted by organized crime in their home countries.

The so-called Northern Triangle countries of El Salvador, Guatemala and Honduras are among the most violent parts of the world outside of war zones.

They are also a major source of migrants flowing into the United States, where President Donald Trump wants to clamp down on both legal and illegal migration.

© – AFP, 2018

Read: ‘Step on the gas – we can make it to seven million’: Austria shaken by ‘Nazi songbook’ scandal

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