"These three main countries from which the children are fleeing are among the nations with top five murder rates in the world (along with Belize and Venezuela), according to the most recent United Nations data. In some cases, such as Guatemala, the homicide rate has actually declined slightly in recent years. But crimes like extortion have become "widespread and intolerable," says Cynthia Arnson, the Latin America director at the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars. "Everyone is hit, down to the person at the bottom of the informal economy selling chewing gum."
There are also "pull" factors drawing migrants to the United States. These include family already residing there and "what appears to be a very deliberate effort by human trafficking rings to spread rumors" about US immigration policy for children, Ms.Arnson says."
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