Thousands of migrants traveling to US dead or missing over last 4 years: AP

Almost 4,000 migrants heading to the U.S. through Mexico over the past four years have been found dead or reported missing, according to research released Tuesday by The Associated Press. 

That figure is about 1,500 people higher than United Nations estimates and the AP reports that the number still may be low due to the number of people who could have potentially gotten lost in the desert and the number of people that may be unwilling to report missing family members due to them potentially immigrating illegally.

AP says that the large number of deaths and disappearances can likely be partially attributed to risks from drug trafficking and gang violence.

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Over 37,000 people have gone missing of a result of violence in the last four years in Mexico, especially in the border state of Tamaulipas, where many migrants attempt to cross into the United States.

Newly elected Mexican President Andrés Manuel López Obrador has pledged to change the country's approach to drug violence, starting with legalizing marijuana. 

López Obrador has also suggested negotiating peace and amnesty for people involved in the narcotics trade.

The AP report comes as a large migrant caravan from Central America has settled along the U.S. border in Tijuana.

The caravan has been a source of controversy as President TrumpDonald John TrumpFamily says Trump travel ban preventing mother from seeing dying son Saudi Arabia rejects Senate position on Khashoggi killing Five things to know about the Trump inauguration investigation MORE has referred to it as an invasion and has vowed to not let them cross the border.