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With mountains, intense mud, fast-running rivers and thick rainforest, the Darién Gap, a stretch of land between South and Central America, is among the most forbidding terrains in the world.
Over the past few years, however, the number of attempted crossings has skyrocketed. From 2010 to 2020, an average of 11,000 migrants made the journey each year. In 2022, almost 250,000 made the trip.
What is pushing them to risk crossing the Darién Gap, and what happens along the way?
On today’s episode
The pandemic, climate change and growing conflict are forcing a seismic shift in global migration.
Two crises are converging at the Darién Gap: an economic and humanitarian disaster underway in South America, and the bitter fight over immigration policy in Washington.
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Julie Turkewitz contributed reporting.
Fact-checked by Susan Lee.
Special thanks to Eileen Sullivan.
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