Guatemalan migrant with COVID-19 arrested in the US dies for deportation

The Guatemalan Foreign Ministry confirmed the death this Sunday of a Guatemalan migrant infected with COVID-19 and in the custody of the United States Immigration and Customs Enforcement Service (ICE).

The deceased, identified as Santiago Baten Oxlaj, 34, entered the Stwart detention center, Georgia (USA), on February 20 and was waiting to be deported to his country, according to a statement from the Guatemalan Ministry of Foreign Relations.

On April 28, Baten was diagnosed with coronavirus, "so he was transferred to the emergency care center (in Atlanta)", but his situation was aggravated because he suffered from diabetes.

"Despite all the medical efforts made, unfortunately Mr. Baten Oxlaj passed away today, Sunday, May 24," the Foreign Ministry said in the press release.

Until last Thursday, when the Guatemalan Ministry of Foreign Affairs published the latest update on cases of nationals of his country abroad affected by the new coronavirus, 95 Guatemalans in foreign nations had died, of whom 93 had died in the United States, and 52 of them in New York.

In total, the Foreign Ministry records 232 positive cases of COVID-19 in the North American country, in addition to the 3,424 infected in Guatemala.

In the US, in addition, 58 deaths, 258 people recovered and two more deaths due to causes other than COVID-19 have been recorded among Guatemalan migrants.

Starting this Monday, when a government agreement promoted by the President of Guatemala, Alejandro Giammattei, is published in the morning, the National Commission Against Coronavirus will enter into force, chaired by pediatrician and infectologist Edwin Asturias, professor at the University of Colorado .

Asturias will be in charge of articulating the efforts of the public and private systems of Guatemala in order to respond to the COVID-19 pandemic.


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