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Immigration Deaths

February 11, 2001

* Your Jan. 8 editorial, "Firmer Case on Immigration Costs," states, "The cost to the immigrants themselves is all too often in lives: About 230 would-be immigrants died crossing the border in 1999, and 500 since 1995. Cutting that toll should be a top federal and state priority."

I agree; however, since the majority of those deaths are directly related to illegal immigrants who have been abandoned by their "coyote" smugglers, we should be seeking cooperation with the Mexican government, as well. Mexican officials have the ability to crack down on the coyotes, who openly solicit their clients in Mexico. This cooperation from Mexico should be included in upcoming talks between President Bush and President Vicente Fox.

BYRON SLATER

San Diego

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