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Central American Migrants

US Agents Fire Tear Gas as Group of Migrants Attempt to Cross Borders

in USA Immigration by

US Agents Fire Tear Gas as Group of Migrants Attempt to Cross BordersEarly on Sunday, a peaceful march was staged by a group of Central American migrants with the aim of appealing for the asylum claims process. Thousands of them have camped in Tijuana with the hopes of applying for asylum in the United States but fewer than a hundred asylum petitions were processed daily by agents at the San Ysidro entry point. Irineo Mujica, part of an aid group, said the objective of the match toward US border was to the plight facing the migrants more visible to the Mexican and US governments.

They pushed past a Mexican police blockade quite easily without any sort of violence – some of the migrants were in fact heard calling out to each other remain peaceful. They were shouting with hand-painted Honduran and American flags aloft in their hands: We are international workers…! We are not criminals..!

The demonstration took a new turn when some of the group saw an opportunity to breach the border as they near the US crossing. They tried to find ways through several points along the border including – squeezing through gaps between mounted wires, peeling back metal sheeting and climbing over fences.

In order to stop the attempt, several shots of tear gas were fired by US agents according to an eyewitness. In this confusion, children were heard screaming and coughing. People who were not attempting to enter the US were not left out as the wind carried the ensuing fumes. Ana Zuniga, a Honduran with a 3-year-old daughter, said the more you try to run, the more the gas chokes you.

Borders Closed

The pedestrian crossings at the San Ysidro were closed as a result. South bound and the North bound vehicle lanes were also closed. All were reopened later in the day according tweets from Customs and Border Protection (CBP).

Kirstjen Nielsen, Homeland Security secretary, said the closure of San Y Sidro was a matter of public safety because projectiles were thrown at CBP personnel. He reaffirmed that this kind of lawlessness would not be condoned, and ports of entry will be shut without hesitation for security and public safety reasons.

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Mexico Says No to Migrating Caravan Arriving at Border

in USA Immigration by

Protests Rocks Arrival of Thousands of IMMIGRANTSLast week, news of the first batch (400 migrants who earlier broke away from others) of migrating caravan arriving Tijuana emerged, and since their arrival, thousands of other Central American migrants have joined them. They are all aware of the aggressive move against them by the government of United States, nevertheless, majority of them are willing to stick around for months until things calm down when they will eventually get the asylum they seek.

This news of thousands of immigrants, who are willing to linger for months, arriving Tijuana (American border) has rocked Mexico. On Sunday, tensions were flying as hundreds of residents protested the situation. The protesters are a group opposing what they call the ‘chaos’ caused by the migrating caravans. They gathered at the front of the largest makeshift shelter in Mexico and were shouting the Mexican national anthem as they wave the country’s flag.

The Protest

The hundreds of protesters revealed they have no reservations about legal immigration but are totally against “illegal invasion” – in their words. They want the Mexican government to toughen border policies just like the US. They want their president to defend the country against violence which they say is inevitable with the presence of the migrating caravans.

Some of the protesters also stated that while they have unequivocally disagreed with Trump on many issues, they agree with him on this. These illegal immigrants should simply go home.

Any sort of mass deportation by these immigrants could shut down the Ysidro port of Entry according to Roy Grant, a resident of Tijuana. Others said not all the migrants are seeking a better life for families, some are gang members.

Juan Manuel Gastelum, Tijuana Mayor, referred to the massive entrance as an “avalanche” that could cause tensions in the city longer than desired (at least six months).

Tweeting about the situation, Trump told the immigrants to go home and stop causing crime and big problems in Mexico.

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US Border Tightened Against Migrant Caravan

in USA Immigration by

US Border Tightened Against Migrant CaravanSecurity measures are being reinforced in the US as hundreds of Central American migrants looking to get asylum in the country reaches Tijuana, the Mexican border city. US military are erecting barricades and laying razor wire.

From among the thousands of migrating caravans making their way to enter the US through Mexico, around 400 migrants broke away. These 400 migrants have become the first batch of the caravan migrants to reach the Mexican border city of Tijuana. They arrived by bus on Tuesday.

The migrants said that they remain unafraid in their attempt to get asylum in the US despite President Trump administration’s aggressive move against them.

A migrant, Kenny Moran, said that it has been a tough month moving from Honduras. He said he left Honduras, with wife and daughter to escape from gang violence and poverty. He also said that the gangs practically make it impossible for you and your family to live. He made it clear that he does not know anyone in the US but knows there is work in Houston.

Human rights organizations revealed that larger groups would arrive in the coming days. An order signed by Trump last Friday has effectively brought suspension to granting of asylum to illegal immigrants. This will inevitably and significantly slow claims at the gate of entry. Nevertheless, immigrants are not deterred.

One of them said he prefers to be in detention in the United States than returning to a country where he knows he might be killed for his difference. Another said he’s willing to remain in Tijuana until the current hype goes down.

Reaction from the US

Jim Mattis, US Defense Secretary, said that he would visit the border today. Lanes at the Otay Mesa and San Ysidro crossings from Tijuana will be closed in order to give the Department of Defense enough room to mount barricades and put barbed wire in place according to US Customs and Border Protection.

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