Published: Wed, April 25, 2018
Global | By Shelia Dennis

Remnants of Mexico migrant caravan closer to USA border

Remnants of Mexico migrant caravan closer to USA border

Marie Vincent, a US -based immigration attorney who met the caravan on a stop along the way, said numerous immigrants had a strong case for USA asylum either because they faced political persecution, lethal threats from gangs, or violence because of gender or sexual identity.

Numerous women and children were planning to seek asylum in the USA after they reach Tijuana, according to a coordinator from immigrant rights group Pueblo Sin Fronteras that has been organizing similar caravans for several years.

USA officials have already made it clear they're skeptical of the migrants' motives, warning that anyone with an invalid claim will be swiftly deported and that anyone who tries to cross the border illegally will face prosecution.

"We still have many challenges ahead, but knowing that Mexico makes itself heard in one voice is enough that they won't mess with us".

The remnants of the migrant caravan that drew the ire of President Donald Trump were continuing their journey north through Mexico toward the USA border.

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"Nafta as you know is moving along", Trump said in a meeting with French President Emmanuel Macron on Tuesday in Washington. "And we will enforce the law through prosecution of illegal border crossers", she said.

"If you enter the United States illegally, let me be clear: you have broken the law".

Traveling together for safety, their numbers were down from a peak of about 1,500 people since they began their journey on Mexico's southern border with Guatemala nearly a month ago, as smaller groups broke away.

The caravan started with about 1,200 migrants, but has reportedly thinned to around 600.

Around 200 migrants will seek asylum in the United States, fleeing brutal gang violence or political persecution in their home countries, he said.

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Sessions' suggestion that Mexican authorities have generously offered to host the immigrants is an exaggeration: earlier in April, Mexican authorities reportedly "stopped" the group in Matias Romero, a town in Oaxaca, in southwest Mexico, claiming they would offer temporary travel passes to those looking to continue their journey to the US southern border.

Media coverage of the US-bound caravan triggered a flurry of furious tweets from Trump, who ordered thousands of National Guard troops to the US-Mexican border and called on Mexico to stop the migrants.

"There are no jobs, no justice, no laws in Honduras", she said. Although it's legal to seek asylum, it's illegal to cross into the country without going through the asylum process.

"People have a legal right, under US law and worldwide agreements signed by the USA, to seek asylum in the United States of America", said Pueblo Sin Fronteras, the group behind the caravan.

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