Mexican authorities say a large group of migrants broke the locks on a gate at the Guatemalan-Mexican border on Friday, illegally entering the country in order to join a larger caravan of migrants making their way north to the United States.
Mexico’s National Immigration Institute announced that about 350 migrants broke down the border gate to enter Mexico, according to the Associated Press.
The agency said the migrants were “hostile” and “aggressive.” Authorities also accused the migrants of attacking Mexican police in the border town of Metapa. The migrants later joined a larger caravan, of about 2,000, making their way north to the U.S.
One of the migrants who spoke to the AP, Claudia Jaqueline Sandoval said she is HIV positive. But that is not her reason for journeying north. Instead, money is scarce in her home country of Honduras, and she hopes to make a better life for her family in America.
According to the AP, there are already several caravans of migrants, including groups of several thousand people, making their way north. The only thing stopping them is Mexico’s delayed process for issuing visas that allow the migrants to journey north to the U.S. border.
The AP explains:
A group of several hundred Cuban, African and Central American migrants have been waiting at the immigration offices in Tapachula for documents that would allow them to travel to the U.S. border, where most plan to request asylum.
Some members of that group have scuffled with immigration authorities and broken windows at the offices in recent days, accusing officials of making them wait too long for papers.
And another group of an estimated 2,500 Central American and Cuban migrants have been stuck for at least a week further west in the Chiapas town of Mapastepec, also waiting for papers.
The situation has become so tense that a riot broke out at an immigration station in Tapachula, Mexico, last week, where migrants allegedly ransacked the building and burned documents.
— Noticias MVS (@NoticiasMVS) April 11, 2019