A Record Year for Asylum Applications — in Mexico

By Jason Peña on September 11, 2019

The Mexican Commission for Refugee Assistance (Comar) released data on the number of asylum applications for the first eight months of 2019. Between January and August of this year, approximately 48,254 migrants originating from nations across the globe have applied for asylum in Mexico – over three times higher than the same time period of 2018.

The summer months have shown a higher volume of processed asylum applications, with more than 8,178 accepted for processing in August — second only to July's total of 8,613.

The top countries of origin of are displayed in the table below:

Country of Origin Number of Migrants
Applying for Asylum
in Mexico (January-
August of 2019)
Honduras 23,064
El Salvador 6,671
Cuba 5,371
Venezuela 4,882
Haiti 2,876
Guatemala 2,361
Nicaragua 1,722
Colombia 336
Brazil 290
Chile 189
Other Countries 492

Hondurans comprised 48.8 percent of applicants seeking asylum in Mexico, followed by El Salvadorans at 13.8 percent, Cubans at 11.3 percent, and Venezuelans at about 10 percent. Next-door Guatemala accounted for only 4.9 percent of the applicants.

About two-thirds of the asylum requests were made in Chiapas, the Mexican state that borders Guatemala.

The head of Comar, Andres Ramirez, tweeted that asylum applicants from beyond Latin America ("extra-continentals") totaled 244 through August, more than the annual total of any of the three prior years. Among there were 153 from Africa, including 46 from Uganda, 31 from Cameroon, 30 from Ghana, and 24 from Angola. There were 55 asylum applicants from 14 different countries in Asia, 13 of them from India or Sri Lanka. There were also 36 applicants from 13 countries in Europe, including 22 from Russia.

Topics: Asylum, Mexico