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Refugee applications explode with Cancun being preferred city

Cancun, Q.R. — The flow of migrants to the state of Quintana Roo continues to increase with the number of refugee application processes rising from 24 in 2015 to 475 in 2019 with Cancun being the preferred city of choice.

Gerardo Talavera Cervantes, director de la Asociación Casa de Refugiados, explained that the applications for refugee status has risen dramatically over the past five years, noting Cancun as the most sought after city.

He says statistics show that refugee applications for Quintana Roo have exploded from the 25 that were received in 2015 to 47 in 2016, 372 applications in 2017 and 502 applications in 2018.

“The last complete updated bulletin of the Mexican Commission for Assistance to Refugees (Comar) is that of 2018. In 2019, the most recent public data is from August with 475 applications. I estimate that by the end of this year, it will be around 700 people only for Quintana Roo,” he explained.

According to the most recent statistics of la Comisión Mexicana de Ayuda a Refugiados (Comar), 78.3 percent of the people seeking refuge status were located in Cancun, while 16.8 percent were located in Solidaridad, 4.6 percent in Othón P. Blanco and 0.2 percent in Cozumel.

Talavera Cervantes said that the majority of migrants seeking refugee status flee their environment due to situations of insecurity that endanger their lives and that of their families. For this reason, an agreement was signed with the Human Rights Commission of the State of Quintana Roo (la Comisión de Derechos Humanos del Estado de Quintana Roo — Cdheqroo) to install a management house to receive migrants that need assistance.

“It is important to work in a coordinated and sensitive way to the needs of people in terms of management because those who are not Mexican and need international protection require adequate information to access their rights and have decent treatment,” he said.