Frustrated Migrants Breach Border at Tijuana

Erika Holt
December 5, 2018

MEXICO CITY, Dec. 3 (UPI) - Thousands of migrants from the Central American caravan in Tijuana, Mexico, have put their names on a waitlist for a preliminary political asylum interview with US authorities - a wait that could be many months.

McAleenan discussed the difficulties the agency is facing in the San Diego sector, where members of a migrant caravan have arrived at the USA border, in an interview with Fox News on Tuesday.

Frustrated and exhausted after weeks of uncertainty, many migrants have become desperate since getting stuck in squalid camps in the Mexican border city of Tijuana.

McAleenan noted that the migrants' confusion at the border has left many desperately looking for a way to cross the border illegally.

Some used a blanket as a rope to help loved ones get over.

The sight of them climbing the fence encouraged others, even as a helicopter patrolled overhead on the U.S. side.

Karen Mayeni, a 29-year-old Honduran mother with three children aged between 6 and 12, told Reuters that she was standing by and watching others penetrating the border and "waiting to see what happens".

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One child suffered a facial injury in the drop from the 18-foot wall, and was treated by Border Patrol agents, who took the entire family into custody. The woman said she would decide her family's next action "in a couple of days".

Ninety minutes later, she and her family were over the fence.

The attempt to cross into the U.S. illegally came just days after the migrants were transferred from one temporary shelter to another after it had become unsanitary.

"We've got a challenging and still potentially volatile situation in Tijuana", said Kevin K. McAleenan, the commissioner of U.S. Customs and Border Protection, on Fox News Tuesday morning.

USA officials have restricted applications through the Chaparral gate in Tijuana to between 40 and 100 per day.

According to a Missing Migrants Project, a joint research project by IOM's Global Migration Data Analysis Center (GMDAC) and Media and Communications Division (MCD) that tracks incidents involving migrants who have died and gone missing while trying to reach an international destination, as many as 3,341 migrant fatalities worldwide have been recorded so far in 2018. US Border Patrol agents had the territory between the two barriers heavily covered. "Stand on my head!" one migrant said, egging his companion on. Mexican authorities arrested and deported those they considered responsible for compromising the city's commitment to public order.

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