U.S. Border Patrol Agents are Systematically Destroying Food & Water Left Behind for Migrants in the Desert

@NoMoreDeaths Twitter

Most people would think that food and water left behind in the desert would be destroyed by weather or wild animals but according to a report by humanitarian groups in most cases, Border Patrol agents were to blame.

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Humanitarian groups, No More Deaths and La Coalicion de Derechos Humanos, found that water jugs left behind for migrants in the Arizona desert were vandalized 415 times, or twice per week, during the 3 years of recorded data from 2012 to 2015, approximately 3,586-gallon jugs of water were destroyed. This strategy by U.S. Border Patrol agents is called Prevention Through Deterrence.

According to the report, not only do U.S. Border Patrol agents repeatedly vandalize food and water left behind for migrants but they also routinely intimidate, harass, and surveil humanitarian aid groups. 

Temperatures in the Arizona desert regularly reach over 100 degrees in the summer and doctors recommend drinking 1.3 to 3.1 gallons of water a day in order to survive hars temperatures but many migrants cannot carry that much water with them. Over the last two decades, some 7,000 human remains have been recovered just in Pima County, Arizona, alone hundreds of migrants die each year while attempting to cross.

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Miguel, a 37-year-old man from Sinaloa Mexico who found water gallons with holes said, "They [the U.S. Border Patrol] must hate us. It’s their work to capture us, but we are humans. And they don’t treat us like humans. It's hate is what it is. They break the bottles out of hate.”