Mexico City: At least 39 people were killed and 29 others were injured in a fire that broke out at a government-run migration facility in northern Mexico on Monday night, authorities said, The New York Times reported.
The fire broke out at the National Migration Institute in Ciudad Juarez, a border city across from El Paso, Tex., shortly before 10 pm in the facility's accommodation area, read a statement by the institute, according to The New York Times. Officials did not immediately respond to a request for comment. They, however, said that they had lodged a complaint so that government authorities can open an investigation, read the statement further.
Television footage showed a swarm of police cars, ambulances and other emergency vehicles in the area.
According to several news outlets, personnel from the institute had been cracking down on migrants in the city earlier in the day, and there had been tension at the institute between migrants and the staff.
Ciudad Juarez is one of the border communities in Mexico where migrants from Cuba, Central America and elsewhere wait as they try to enter the United States.
In December, the United States Supreme Court said that pandemic-era health measures that restricted migration at the southern border would remain in place for now. That measure, known as Title 42, has allowed migrants who might otherwise qualify for asylum to be swiftly expelled at the border, according to The New York Times.
The court's ruling delayed the potential for a large increase in unlawful crossings into the U.S. from Mexico. But the measure is scheduled to expire in early May.