Migrants 'Crash Gates,' Head into Mexico — CARAVAN DEFIANT

Jeannie Matthews
October 21, 2018

Honduran migrants who have made their way through Central America were gathering at Guatemala's northern border with Mexico on Friday, despite President Donald Trump's threat to deploy the military to stop them entering the United States.

In contrast to the earlier caravan, which had advanced into Mexico before officials began intensive efforts to process the migrants, the Mexican government turned its attention to the new group right on its southern border.

On the Mexican side of the border, a group of about 30 migrants sang the national anthem of Honduras.

Mexico says the migrants will be processed and that those without a legitimate case to travel onwards or stay in Mexico will be returned to their countries of origin.

Most of the migrants who had gathered there were from Honduras, but there were also people from El Salvador and Guatemala, Frederick said.

Mexico has said it will allow only migrants carrying valid passports and visas to enter.

"Because many of those people, a percentage, a fairly big percentage of those people are criminals and they want to come into our country and they're criminals". Indeed, some have already reached Mexico and requested asylum.

"If that doesn't work out, we're calling up the military, not the guard, we are calling up the military and we're going to have the military stationed there, not coming into this country".

The Republican billionaire has made curbing undocumented immigration a keystone of his presidency.

The group's decision to re-form capped a day in which Mexican authorities again refused mass entry to migrants on the bridge, instead accepting small groups for asylum processing and giving some visitor permits.

On the bridge, some of the migrants were hanging from the closed gate that represents the border at Tacun Uman, Guatemala, and Mexico, wailing and saying they were hungry.

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Trump also repeated his comment about the possibility of sending the military forces to the US-Mexican border to prevent illegal migration flows.

"It's a good contrast", said former Trump campaign aide Barry Bennett, who said the caravan was "perfectly timed" for Trump's midterm pitch.

One of the migrants, a Honduran man who was first to overcome the police barriers and cross into Mexico, was heard shouting euphorically that no one could stop the caravan's momentum.

Like numerous migrants, he said he was in pursuit of work in the United States, and a lifeline from his impoverished city. A recent Pew Research Center survey found a majority of Democratic voters - 57 percent - think the treatment of immigrants in the country illegally is a very big problem in the USA, compared with just 15 percent of Republican voters who say the same.

According to reports, more than 1,400 migrants have been left behind by smugglers in the desert across the Arizona-Mexico border.

"The migrant routes through Mexico are increasingly controlled by organized crime in Mexico, and they prey on Central Americans".

Pompeo, who also met with Mexican President Enrique Peña Nieto, said the situation is quickly reaching a point of crisis and the caravan must be stopped before it reaches the USA border.

"I didn't think it would be this easy", said Samuel Barela, 17, who crossed in a raft Friday night, about a week after leaving his hometown of Choluteca in southern Honduras.

Trump spent much of the past week complaining about the caravan.

Will they reach the U.S. border?

The migrants say they organized for the long and hard journey on social media, but Washington suspects the group has been organized as a deliberate provocation.

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