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Spending Holidays in Mexico is dangerous for returning migrants, government suggest convoys and police escort.

MEXICO CITY – Mexico’s government is telling migrants driving home for the holidays from the United States that they should form convoys for their own safety while traveling through Mexico, and an official said Monday that police will accompany convoys on the most dangerous stretches of highway.

A seemingly intractable wave of drug cartel violence has made some border highways, especially in the states of Tamaulipas, Sonora and Sinaloa, so dangerous that the U.S. State Department urges travelers to avoid driving on some of the roads.

“When there are hot spots, we can request that a patrol escort the convoy,” said Itzel Ortiz, the director of the Paisano Program, which is in charge of welcoming returning migrants and ensuring their trips home are safe.

Demands for bribes by police and officials at Mexican customs checkpoints used to be the worst problems for returning migrants, who often bring cash, new vehicles and appliances with them.

But that seems almost innocuous compared to the challenges posed by drug cartel gunmen, who frequently set up roadblocks on northern highways to steal vehicles and cash, kidnap or kill travelers.

Ortiz noted that those returning home have already reported “extortion attempts by members of drug cartels” and she confirmed that a family of returning migrants had been attacked on a highway in Sinaloa last week.

She did not give details, but local media reported that gunmen followed the family’s vehicle and sprayed it with bullets, wounding a girl. Sinaloa prosecutors were not immediately available to confirm those reports.

Ortiz said the idea for the convoys began last year, when relatives of migrants returning from…READ MORE HERE.