Deported illegal immigrants to Mexico

US migration policyIn case of doubt, deportation

The "Casa del Migrante" in Ciudad Juárez is a friendly, sparkling clean house run by the Catholic Church. Stranded people get a bed, fresh clothes and hot meals here. Juan Herrera, 29 years old and slightly squat, is sitting at one of the tables in the courtyard.

The day before, the Mexican was deported from the USA - for the second time: "They caught me when I crossed the border in black. That was after my first deportation. The first time the police caught me without papers, when I was in the supermarket with my family. It's sad when the children see their father being taken away. "

Juan Herrera lived in Texas for a total of eleven years, worked there as a construction worker and started a family. The fact that he is married to a US woman and has two children with her did not stop the US migration authorities from deporting him. Juan Herrera attributes his deportation to the change of government. "Now, under Trump, more immigrants are arrested for no reason. Before we lived in peace - today we have to be afraid of being stopped by the police just like that. They arrest you, call the immigration authorities and deport you."

Deported after a speed control

The expulsion of Juan Herrera is not an isolated incident. Donald Trump started with the message that the "indocumentados", immigrants without residence permits, are not welcome in the USA. Much more often than before it hits people who have lived in the country for a very long time. The illegal immigrants are arrested in raids, which also took place under the Barack Obama administration, or the police catch them in the car at alcohol and speed controls.

"I came home from work with my husband, we wanted to pick up our children from the babysitter. The police stopped us because we drove a little too fast. My husband is an American, they left him alone. This is racism, because they immediately asked me for my ID, which I didn't have - and immediately I went to jail. "

Casa del Migrante - migrant hostel in Ciudad Juarez (Victoria Eglau / deutschlandradio)

The Mexican who said this doesn't want to give her name. She has just been deported from the USA after spending four months in a deportation prison there. The migration authority of Ciudad Juárez has brought the 22-year-old, who is wearing a red polo shirt, to the migrant hostel. She came to the United States when she was twelve. "Since Trump took office, it has been enough not to have any papers - and you are separated from your family, children, home and work. My daughters are four and one and I don't know when I'll see them again."

Message of Discrimination

The head of the migrant hostel, Father Javier Calvillo, also considers the actions of the US under Trump to be devastating. But he criticizes Trump's predecessor even more sharply: "Obama always sounded so human, but he did the most damage to the immigrants and deported them on a large scale. Under his administration, deportation prisons for minors, women, and families were established, and he started the raids against immigrants. "

Father Javier Calvillo - Head of Casa del Migrante (Victoria Eglau / deutschlandradio)

In Trump, Father Javier Calvillo fears less the threat of building a wall on the border than the message of discrimination: "If this message gets through to the people and turns into action, then we are dealing with a much more dangerous wall - and it is difficult to destroy. "

Last hope Canada

Juan Herrera, the deported man from Texas, wants to go to his mother today - she lives in the Mexican border town of Reynosa. Herrera's hope is to find a legal way to the USA with the help of the lawyer his American wife has hired. If that doesn't work, he would swim through the border river Rio Grande one more time. "I have to help my children, my family. I can't leave them alone."

One of the deported women in the "Casa del Migrante" also has relatives in Reynosa and wants to go there by bus. But she is afraid, she says, because the area is in the hands of drug cartels and very dangerous. There is perplexity and uncertainty among the deported Mexicans. The young mother in the red polo shirt wants to stay in Mexico first - far away from her small children. "I think my daughters have better educational and future opportunities in the USA. I will look for a job and later try to emigrate to Canada."