Thursday, June 20, 2024

300-strong migrant caravan No. 5 arrives at southern border

About 300 people, mostly from El Salvador, have arrived at the Guatemala border town of Tecún Umán, intending to cross into Ciudad Hidalgo, Chiapas, when they will become the fifth migrant caravan to enter Mexico since October 19.

The migrants are mostly men; only about 10% are women, some of whom are traveling with children.

The charitable organization Oxfam said it distributed 268 food vouchers to the migrants, while local health authorities said they provided care to about 50 people suffering from fever, headaches and pain.

The latest caravan caught up with 200 who have been staying in churches and shelters in Tecún Umán. The two are expected to merge and cross into Mexico together, on their way to the United States.

There are unofficial reports that more people are planning to leave El Salvador soon, expecting to unite with those at the border and form an even larger caravan.

It is possible that they see greater safety in numbers against efforts by Mexican officials to stop them: members of a small group of 250, also from El Salvador, were arrested November 9 three hours after crossing into Mexico by wading across the Suchiate river.

The waiting caravan has been preceded by four others: 7,000 from Honduras in the first one, followed by a second 10 days later.

The 450 members of the third caravan, this one from El Salvador, decided to turn themselves in to immigration authorities soon after crossing on October 30.

The last caravan to cross into Mexico did so on November 2. It was composed of 3,000 people from El Salvador.

Immigration officials estimated today there are now about 13,800 Central American migrants in Mexico whose destination is the United States. The majority of those are in Tijuana or Mexicali or elsewhere in Baja California.

Source: El Universal (sp) López Dóriga (sp)

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