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Montevideo, December 3rd 2022 - 06:11 UTC

 

 

Honduran migrant column heading for US, but Mexico warns it won't let them through

Friday, January 17th 2020 - 16:07 UTC
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Guatemala's president Alejandro Giammattei, revealed Mexico's Foreign Minister Marcelo Ebrard had told him Mexico would not allow the new caravan to pass. Guatemala's president Alejandro Giammattei, revealed Mexico's Foreign Minister Marcelo Ebrard had told him Mexico would not allow the new caravan to pass.

US President Donald Trump has put Mexico and Central American nations under pressure to accept a series of migration agreements that aim to shift the burden of dealing with asylum-seekers on to them, and away from the United States.

Most migrants caught on the US border with Mexico depart from Honduras, Guatemala and El Salvador, seeking to escape chronic poverty or gang violence.

Unlike Guatemala, Mexico has refused to become a so-called safe third country obliging it to accept asylum claims from migrants that set foot on its soil. Still, Trump has threatened trade sanctions if it does not contain the flow of people.

Guatemala's new president, Alejandro Giammattei, revealed that Mexico's Foreign Minister Marcelo Ebrard had told him Mexico would not allow the new caravan to pass.

Mexico's foreign ministry did not respond to the assertion, but Interior Minister Olga Sanchez said the border would be policed and that the Mexican government would not be issuing any visas of safe conduct to the migrants.

“That's very clear,” she told reporters.

According to communications shared by some of the migrants on messaging service WhatsApp, some of the Hondurans said that they planned to meet in the town of Santa Elena in northern Guatemala and head for the Mexican border on Saturday.

Under a freedom of movement accord between northern Central American countries, Giammattei said he would let the caravan enter Guatemala provided people had the necessary paperwork.

Some migrants were turned back at the Guatemalan border on Wednesday and Honduran police fired tear gas on others who tried to cross without going through migration checks.

But Guatemala's National Migration Institute said in a statement that at least 2,274 people had entered the country. Alejandra Mena, a spokeswoman for the institute, said the migrants had mostly crossed the northern part of the border with Honduras.

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