Thursday, 15 November, 2018

Mexico seeks assistance from United Nations for migrant caravan

Trump again suggests sending troops to US southern border Trump — Again — Threatens to Send Military to US-Mexico Border
Ellis Copeland | 20 October, 2018, 04:25

Mr Trump had earlier this week threatened to withhold aid to the region as a caravan with several thousand Honduran migrants travelled through Guatemala to Mexico in the hope of crossing into the United States to escape violence and poverty.

Meanwhile, in a tweet today, the U.S. president threatened to cut USA humanitarian aid to Honduras if the caravan was allowed to arrive at the border.

Photos posted online show some of the migrants breaking down the fence's gate and continuing towards the border bridge.

Waving Honduran flags and carrying umbrellas to protect against the sun, the migrants arrived earlier at the Guatemalan side of the muddy Suchiate River that divides the country from Mexico, noisily demanding they be let in.

In a series of raging tweets, the USA president urged Mexico to "stop this onslaught" and prevent the would-be immigrants from entering the US.

The exhausted travelers are mostly from Honduras, but migrants from other Central American countries have joined the caravan.

Trump took things up a notch, falsely accusing Democrats wanting "Open Borders" and leading the "assault on our country" by a "large flow of people, INCLUDING MANY CRIMINALS". Mexico reportedly responded by sending police to its own southern border to stop the caravan from coming through after the threat was made.

Throughout the week, federal police aircraft arrived in the city of Tapachula, near the border with Guatemala, with hundreds of federal officers equipped with antiriot gear.

Mexico's Foreign Ministry said in a statement that it needs the United Nations body's help to manage all the refugee applications. If Mexican police don't get the job done. this will get interesting.

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Central American governments have dismissed Trump's threats to block United States aid.

About 4,000 migrants have reportedly fled Central America to escape poverty and violence.

Videgaray says that "for the Mexican government it is essential first to respect and protect the human rights and fundamental dignity of all of the migrants and to do so under a logical and humanitarian and respectful treatment". More than 150 members of that group crossed the border and sought asylum.

Pompeo said he and Videgaray spoke of the importance of stopping the caravan before it reaches the US border.

The president announced plans in April to send thousands of National Guard troops to the border, where they could remain until his promised wall is constructed.

Mexico's president, Enrique Peña Nieto, is also hosting emergency talks with the U.S. secretary of state, Mike Pompeo, on Friday, to assess the situation.

In April, Mexican immigration officials had some success in dispersing the smaller caravan by processing many who made a decision to seek refugee status in Mexico, but some did continue on to the USA border where they were processed over several days.

Mexico says people arriving at the border will be able to apply for refugee status, and has asked for help from the United Nations refugee agency.

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