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Government proposes changes to article to remove INM power to ‘fast track’ expel foreigners

Mexico City, Mexico — The Secretary of the Interior, Adán Augusto López Hernández, reported that a legal opinion will be sent to the Chamber of Deputies with the purpose that the National Migration Institute (INM) not have the power to deport foreigners by “fast track” due to to political or social expressions.

“What we are going to do is make the Constitution oblige the creation of a law regulating Article 33 of the Constitution. This initiative was presented five years ago in the Senate of the Republic. It was approved and is currently in the Chamber of Deputies. We have already consulted the Governance and Constitutional Points Commission,” he explained.

“We are going to present an opinion to modify the draft, (…) a legal procedure will be established that will be regulated by the Ministry of the Interior and that guarantees foreigners the right to a prior hearing,” he added.

In previous administrations, he said, this article was used on a discretionary basis to expel foreign professors and researchers. From this, 17 cases were registered in total between 2006 and 2018.

“Article 33 of the Constitution, specifically the second paragraph, has been a tool used with total discretion to restrict the freedom of expression or demonstration of foreigners who are in national territory,” he said.

Before 2006, there are no records, since, when the law was modified in 2011, a paragraph was added to that article that instructs a prior hearing.

“What was done in the recent past was that the Instituto de Migración Nacional (INM)
was used to expel from the country people who had expressed an opinion of a political nature or opposition in social matters,” he said.