Caminando Fronteras travelled to Senegal to accompany the families of the victims of the Atlantic route.

We travelled to Senegal to continue weaving transnational networks with relatives of border victims. During this visit, the collective aimed to share space and time with families we have accompanied in the search for their loved ones over the last few years. We wanted to have the opportunity to look at each other and understand what has happened in their lives after such a terrible loss, having the opportunity to discuss their needs and strategies of resistance.

In this country, we have also met with social organisations that have shown us their vision of the context and the challenges they face in accompanying reparation and justice processes. These spaces are fundamental for sharing and structuring in an increasingly solid way the struggle against the violence generated by the policies of death established at the border.

Senegal is the origin of the deadliest migratory route to the Spanish state: more than 7,000 people have died trying to reach the Canary Islands since 2018, according to the data we have documented in Caminando Fronteras. We are facing one of the most dangerous migratory journeys in the world.

Many of these people disappeared at sea, causing more significant pain among their relatives, who have not even had the opportunity to recover their bodies and bury them in their communities. This is one of the reasons why this trip has been so crucial for us, as it allows us to continue denouncing injustices such as the omission of relief or the administrative obstacles that continue to prevent the identification of the bodies.

During the days we spent in Senegal, we strengthened ties with families and communities and learned from them to improve the accompaniment we provide in the processes of seeking justice, truth and reparation.

With the families at the centre and the memory of the victims as our support, we will continue to fight against the border regime that causes so much pain.

Ca-minando Fronteras accompanies the organisation IM-Defensoras in the presentation of its publication “El Pacto de Cuidarnos”

Last Monday, 27 February, our colleague Helena Maleno participated in the presentation of the book “El Pacto de Cuidarnos. 2010-2021: Integral Feminist Protection in Mesoamerica from the Mesoamerican Initiative of Women Human Rights Defenders”, published by the IM-Defensoras network.

The event occurred at the Ateneo La Maliciosa in Madrid and was organised by IM-Defensoras, Calala Fondo de Mujeres, Peace Brigades (PBI) and Frontline Defenders (FLD). During the presentation, moderated by María San Martín (Frontline Defenders), Fiona Montagut (Calala Fondo de Mujeres) and Marusia López (IM-Defensoras) spoke first, recalling the process of producing the publication and IM-Defensoras’ track record in protecting women human rights defenders. Next, Katherin Cruz (Red Nacional de Defensoras de Derechos Humanos en Honduras), Brytany Castillo (ASPIDH Arcoiris Trans and Red Salvadoreña de Defensoras) and Dalila Argueta (Red Nacional de Defensoras de Derechos Humanos en Honduras) shared their experiences as defenders of territory and the rights of transgender people in Mesoamerica.

Finally, our colleague Helena Maleno spoke alongside Míriam García (PBI) to discuss the risks of defending rights from the Spanish state. Our colleague explained how the knowledge of Mesoamerican women defenders had been vital in developing collective protection in border contexts. In this sense, Maleno expressed her gratitude for the role that many of those present had played in forming a security and support network that was decisive during the criminalisation she suffered from the Spanish state and Morocco.

The experience of more than ten years and more than two thousand activists coordinated by IM-Defensoras has served to give content to a publication that proposes strategies for self-defence in the face of the impunity of violence protected by the authoritarianism of states. The construction of networks was shown to be the critical element for protecting women defenders of life, territory and human rights. You can read or download El Pacto de Cuidarnos on the IM-Defensoras website in Spanish and English.

In this video, you can see a summary of the presentation.

Desalambre Award from to the best documentation work for the report “Monitoring the right to the life in the Euro-African Western Border” by Ca-Minando Fronteras

On Thursday, 16 February 2023, the IV Desalambre Awards gala was held in Madrid. These awards, organised by, recognise the work of activists, organisations and journalists committed to defending human rights. The work of Ca-Minando Fronteras was awarded in the category of best documentation work for the report “Monitoring the right to life on the Euro-African Western Border”.

This report carried out within the framework of our Human Rights Observatory since 2015, is considered the most reliable source for counting the number of people killed and missing on the way to Europe, especially on the maritime routes. During the awards ceremony, the head of the Desalambre section at, Gabriela Sánchez, highlighted the high quality of the data provided by the group, which has become the best reference for the media when it comes to reporting on the tragedies and violations of rights occurring at the border.

Our colleagues Helena Maleno, Lucas Vaquero and Erika Guilabert accepted the award, thanking everyone who made it possible to compile such valuable information. In our speech, we had words for the families who do not give up in the search for their loved ones; the communities on the move who show us the reality of life on the frontiers of death; the victims themselves, whose memory inspires our struggle; and the compañeras who have been part of our network at some point over the last 20 years.

Thank you to all of them and to all of you who are always there. This award is also yours.

Watch the video of the award ceremony and Helena Maleno’s full speech.

If you want to know the rest of the winners, you can see the news on

We publish an article in the first monograph on migrant deaths and missing persons at the border of the international journal of Anthropology and Forensic Odontology

The Spanish Association of Anthropology and Forensic Odontology ( dedicates the sixth issue of its periodical to deaths at the border. From different perspectives, it analyses the context of this reality and describes the multidisciplinary challenges for recognising the rights of victims and their families.

We contribute to this reflection with an article signed by the collective: Dead and missing persons on the Western European-African border: forgotten rights, denied rights (pp. 18-26).

We are grateful for the work of the AEAOF in the search for alternatives from different spheres of responsibility in the face of the reality of the deaths and disappearances of migrants at the border, recognising the commitment of the organisation and its members to human rights and networking from different spheres.

Our collective has prepared an article for this publication that represents a synthesis of our lessons learned during more than twenty years of experience searching for missing persons on the Western Euro-African Border.

In this monograph, we offer an overview of the current situation of migratory movements and how they are impacted by policies that have turned the land and sea borders between Spain and Africa into spaces of impunity and violation of rights.

Next, we analyse the deaths and disappearances of people on the move based on the quantitative and qualitative research carried out by our organisation and the existing difficulties in identifying the bodies of migrants who have arrived in Spain. Subsequently, we study the specific violence and the profound psychosocial impact that these deaths and disappearances have on the families in the countries of origin and the communities of people on the move.

Our writing includes the different experiences of resistance and collective organisation woven at the community level by families and communities to initiate processes of truth, justice, reparation and non-repetition. In conclusion, we present the theoretical and practical keys that should underpin accompaniment in terms of rights and human rights for all victims of the border and their families and communities.

The magazine can be downloaded in full here.

Are you looking for a family member or acquaintance who has disappeared on a migratory route? If so, contact us here.