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I don't want to go on being just a root in the shadows,
vacillating, extended, shivering with dream,
down in the damp bowels of earth,
absorbing it, thinking it, eating it every day.

-Pablo Neruda from 'Walking Around'

Border issues in the news...

Border agents find 5 dead, rescue more than a dozen

Five illegal immigrants were found dead Monday through Wednesday along Arizona's stretch of the U.S-Mexican border, the U.S. Border Patrol reported.

Border Patrol agents also carried out three notable rescues of illegal immigrants, including helping a woman six months pregnant who was dehydrated, said Rob Daniels, Border Patrol Tucson Sector spokesman.
Four of the five bodies were found on the Tohono O'odham Reservation. Of the last 14 bodies recovered in the Border Patrol's Tucson Sector, 12 have been found on the reservation.

The reservation, which stretches across 75 miles of border and is comparable in size to the state of Connecticut, has been a particularly deadly area for illegal immigrants in the past decade and home to the deadliest corridor.

An 18-mile-wide corridor on the eastern part of the reservation, running from Mexico north through Sells and bordered on the east by the Baboquivari Mountains, claimed the lives of 229 border crossers from November 1999 through mid-November 2007, the Arizona Daily Star found in an analysis of 1,156 deaths recorded by the Border Patrol.

That's more than three times the average number of deaths in other segments of the Border Patrol's Tucson Sector.

Most died of the heat.

Including Thursday, temperatures in Southern Arizona have hit or exceeded 100 degrees for 14 consecutive days, said Craig Shoemaker of the National Weather Service. It reached 107 degrees on Monday and Tuesday and 102 on Wednesday, weather service data show.

At least 19 illegal immigrants have been found dead in June, according to Border Patrol figures.

Two bodies were discovered Wednesday, one on Tuesday and two on Monday.

Continue reading the article by Brady McCombs in the Arizona Daily Star.

7 bodies of illegal immigrants discovered in desert

U.S. Border Patrol agents discovered seven bodies of suspected illegal immigrants in Arizona's desert from Friday through Sunday as the scorching summer heat raged on.

Nearly 60 others who were suffering from dehydration or lost were rescued.

Including Monday, temperatures in Southern Arizona have exceeded 105 degrees for nine straight days and exceeded 100 degrees for 10 consecutive days, said Bill Turnerof the National Weather Service. Saturday's high was 111 degrees and Friday's 109 degrees.

Agents found the bodies of two illegal immigrants Sunday, three Saturday and two on Friday, said Mike Scioli, Border Patrol Tucson Sector spokesman.

Continue reading the article by Brady McCombs in the Arizona Daily Star

2 migrants found dead at separate sites

U.S. Border Patrol agents discovered the bodies of two illegal immigrants Wednesday and Thursday.

On Thursday at about 11:45 a.m., a Border Patrol agent came upon a deceased man, believed to be in his 20s, in a wash about seven miles east of Sasabe and about two miles north of the border, said Rob Daniels, Border Patrol Tucson Sector spokesman.

On Wednesday at 3:30 p.m., a crew aboard a National Guard helicopter spotted a man on the northern part of the Tohono O'odham Nation, he said. An agent went to the area and found a 27-year-man from Chiapas, Mexico, dead.

From the Arizona Daily Star

Deaths in desert down so far this year

The number of illegal immigrants dying in Arizona's desert appears to have significantly decreased so far this year — no matter who's counting.

Tallies from the U.S. Border Patrol, county medical examiner's offices and the Mexican Consulate show declines in deaths that range between 21 percent and 35 percent lower than the previous year. Each organization tracks the deaths slightly differently.

Some say the lower number is a sign that fewer people are crossing through Arizona, perhaps as a result of more enforcement at the border, the threat of jail time in the Border Patrol's zero-tolerance program, the state's new employer-sanctions law and the downturn in the U.S. economy.

Others say it's more likely because of cooler weather, or because smugglers have shifted routes.
But with the rest of June and the hottest, and deadliest, month of July still to come, the numbers could spike to match the totals of past years.

Continue reading this article by Brady McCombs in the Arizona Daily Star

Three border crossers die; 47 caught in Nogales

At least three illegal immigrants died Monday and Tuesday along Arizona's border with Mexico, officials said.
Also Monday and Tuesday, U.S. Border Patrol agents arrested 47 illegal immigrants in two downtown Nogales, Ariz., hotels and rescued dozens of illegal border crossers, officials said.

Deaths

Three illegal immigrants — two men and a woman — died on the Tohono O'odham Nation west of Tucson, officials said.

On Tuesday at about 9 a.m. southwest of Sells, a Border Patrol agent discovered the body of a 21-year-old man from Mexico, said Rob Daniels, Border Patrol Tucson Sector spokesman. The agent found the man under a tree south of Federal Route 20, he said. He appeared to have died a couple of hours earlier.
On Monday at about 11 a.m., an agent with the Border Patrol's search, trauma and rescue team found the body of a man about four miles southwest of the village of Pisinimo, west of Sells, Daniels said. Borstar agents had been looking for the man since the night before.

The rescue attempt began late Sunday, when agents apprehended two men near Pisinimo. One of them was the deceased man's brother. He told agents he had left his brother the night before about five miles south of Pisinimo. That man, a 32-year-old citizen of Mexico and the man with him, a 19-year-old Mexican citizen, helped agents during the search, Daniels said.

The deceased was a 34-year-old man from Mexico, Daniels said. His brother was put in contact with officials from the Mexican Consulate, which will help him make funeral arrangements and return to Mexico, Daniels said.

On Monday night around 9 p.m., the Border Patrol was notified of a 911 call made by a man who said he and three others were in distress near the village of Vamori, about 10 miles north of the border. About 9:45 p.m., a crew aboard a Customs and Border Protection Air and Marine helicopter spotted the four people — two married couples — and landed.

The crew put them aboard the helicopter and flew them to the Sells hospital, Daniels said. At about 10 p.m., one of the women, a 20-year-old from Veracruz, Mexico, died at the hospital, he said.
The other woman, 21, of Tlaxcala, Mexico, was flown by life flight to St. Mary's Hospital in Tucson. No information was available on her condition as of Tuesday night.

The two men were treated and deemed fit for travel. They were turned over to the custody of the Mexican Consulate.

Continue reading this article by Brady McCombs in the Arizona Daily Star

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