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Thursday, October 14, 2004

USA: Biologist dies in Arizona gulch

Mario Alberto Diaz, a biologist nearing completion of his master's degree, crawled under a barbed-wire fence marking the border with the United States one evening this summer. He had 48 hours to go in his illegal trek across the desert.

At the end of the second day, Diaz collapsed in exhaustion in a dry Arizona gulch and never got up. His body lay there for 20 days, left behind in the biggest yearly influx of illegal migration across the U.S.-Mexico border since 2000.


The U.S. Border Patrol registered 172 migrant fatalities in Arizona and 153 along the rest of the U.S.-Mexico border in the 12 months that ended Sept. 30. Other tallies for Arizona ranged as high as 221 deaths.


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