Migrant caravan slogs on through southern Mexico with no expectations from a US-Mexico meeting

by Chloe Baker
Migrant Caravan

Beneath the scorching sun, a multitude of migrants in a caravan persisted in their arduous journey through southern Mexico on Tuesday. Some among them expressed a prevailing sense of pessimism regarding an upcoming meeting between American and Mexican officials, which is set to address the escalating migrant influx at the U.S. border.

This resilient assembly of migrants advanced beyond Mexico’s primary inland immigration inspection point near the town of Huixtla, situated in the southern state of Chiapas. Notably, the National Guard personnel stationed there refrained from intervening as approximately 6,000 members of the caravan passed through.

Their immediate destination was the town of Villa Comaltitlan, situated approximately 11 miles (17 kilometers) northwest of Huixtla. Historically, Mexico has permitted such migrant groups to traverse its territory with the expectation that the arduous journey along the highway would naturally deter them. To date, no migrant caravan has successfully traversed the entire 1,000-mile (1,600-kilometer) distance to the U.S. border.

The forthcoming meeting, scheduled for Wednesday, is anticipated to involve discussions on the management of the migrant situation. However, migrant activist Luis García Villagrán, one of the organizers of the caravan, characterized it as a gathering of individuals with questionable motives, stating, “The meeting will be between fools and fools, who want to use women and children as trading pieces. We are not trading pieces for any politician.”

Villagrán asserted that Mexico’s primary interest lies in securing financial support for the detention and deportation of migrants, remarking, “What Mexico wants is the money, the money to detain and deport migrants.”

Mexican President Andrés Manuel López Obrador acknowledged U.S. officials’ desire for Mexico to take more proactive measures in deterring migrants at its southern border with Guatemala. These measures include impeding the movement of migrants via trains, trucks, or buses across Mexico, a policy known as “contention.” In return, President López Obrador seeks increased development aid for the home countries of migrants and the reduction or elimination of sanctions against Cuba and Venezuela, emphasizing that these issues will form the basis of discussion.

For some, like Norbey Díaz Rios, a migrant from Colombia, returning home is not a viable option due to threats from criminal organizations. Díaz Rios, aged 46, intends to seek asylum in the U.S., underscoring his determination to persevere in his quest for a secure and productive life.

The U.S. delegation attending the talks in Mexico City includes Secretary of State Antony Blinken, Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas, and White House homeland security adviser Liz Sherwood-Randall.

The surge in migrants at the southwest U.S. border, with as many as 10,000 daily arrests this month, prompted the Mexican government to address the issue. Temporary closures of critical Texas railway border crossings by U.S. officials, citing an overwhelmed processing capacity, exacerbated the situation. While these crossings have since been reopened, the message conveyed was unequivocal.

This particular caravan embarked on its journey on Christmas Eve from Tapachula, a city near the Guatemalan border. On Christmas night, migrants found themselves sleeping on rudimentary bedding such as scraps of cardboard or plastic, whether beneath awnings, in tents, or on the bare ground.

Among the caravan’s composition were not only single adults but also entire families, all driven by a shared determination to reach the U.S. border. Their frustration grew over weeks or even months of waiting in the nearby city of Tapachula for the necessary documents that could grant them permission to continue their quest.

Mexico reported detecting approximately 680,000 migrants traversing the country in the first 11 months of 2023. A prior agreement between Mexico and the U.S., designed to accommodate migrants from countries like Venezuela, Nicaragua, and Cuba who were turned away by the U.S., seems insufficient in light of the escalating numbers, causing disruptions in bilateral trade and fueling anti-migrant sentiments.

[For more news coverage on Latin America and the Caribbean, visit https://bigbignews.net/latin-america]

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) about Migrant Caravan

What is the current status of the migrant caravan in southern Mexico?

The migrant caravan in southern Mexico is continuing its journey, with thousands of migrants persevering in their trek despite the challenges they face.

What are the expectations for the upcoming meeting between American and Mexican officials regarding the migrant surge at the U.S. border?

There is a prevailing sense of skepticism among some migrants regarding the upcoming meeting. They anticipate that the discussions may not yield favorable outcomes, with concerns about the treatment of women and children as bargaining tools.

How have Mexican authorities responded to the migrant caravan passing through Huixtla?

National Guard officers stationed near Huixtla made no effort to impede the estimated 6,000 members of the caravan as they passed through the area.

What is the migrants’ goal in continuing their journey?

The migrants are striving to reach the town of Villa Comaltitlan, which is about 11 miles northwest of Huixtla, as they persist in their pursuit of reaching the U.S. border.

What is the history of migrant caravans traveling through Mexico?

In the past, Mexico has allowed migrant caravans to pass through its territory, with the expectation that the strenuous journey along the highway would discourage them. However, no migrant caravan has successfully completed the entire 1,000-mile journey to the U.S. border.

What are the key issues to be discussed in the upcoming meeting between U.S. and Mexican officials?

The meeting is expected to address measures to address the migrant situation, including Mexico’s role in deterring migrants at its southern border with Guatemala and potential development aid for migrants’ home countries.

How is this caravan different from previous ones?

This caravan started its journey on Christmas Eve from Tapachula, near the Guatemalan border, and is composed of both single adults and entire families. Frustration has grown among migrants waiting for documents in nearby Tapachula.

How has the surge in migrants at the U.S. border affected U.S.-Mexico relations?

The surge in migrant arrivals at the southwest U.S. border has strained relations between the two countries. Temporary closures of key Texas railway border crossings by U.S. officials have had economic repercussions, leading to concerns and negotiations between the governments.

What is the broader context of the migrant issue in Mexico?

Mexico reported detecting a significant number of migrants moving through the country in the first 11 months of 2023. Agreements between Mexico and the U.S. aimed at managing this issue have faced challenges as migration numbers continue to rise, impacting bilateral trade and sparking anti-migrant sentiment.

More about Migrant Caravan

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Reader23 December 27, 2023 - 4:05 am

wow, dis migrant carvan tuff. hope dey make it, poor folks

Traveler87 December 27, 2023 - 11:24 am

huixtla, villa comaltitlan, long journey, hope dey safe!

InfoSeeker December 27, 2023 - 5:46 pm

Need mor info on border crisiz, dis link got it.

ConcernedCitizen55 December 27, 2023 - 8:21 pm

US-Mex relashun get straind ovr dis, not gud 4 trade!

CurrentEventsGuy December 28, 2023 - 1:27 am

dis meetin btween US n Mex officials, some say it no good. y migrants still goin?


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