“The caravan is over. Everyone is on their own now.”
The last time we check on the migrant caravan, dozens of immigrants from Central America had attempted to breach the wall at the border while 350 others were heading back home.
The reverse-Exodus is continuing, as over 1000 Central Americans have decided to return to their countries after entry into the United States was not as easy as originally promised.
In recent days, vans from Mexico’s National Migration Institute have been taking migrants from the El Barretal shelter to immigration offices where they can begin the voluntary repatriation process. Earlier this week, a group of migrants bid their fellow Hondurans farewell with hugs and folk songs. A top Mexican official told one news organization that about 1,000 members of the caravan have already left for Honduras.
The dream of the caravan was to move in large groups through dangerous areas to protect each other from criminals and smugglers, and eventually arrive at the U.S.-Mexico border where they could seek asylum and gain steady employment. Many traveled 2,800 miles mostly on foot through brutal conditions and were under the impression that it would be just a matter of days before they could cross the U.S. border, like crossing into Guatemala and Mexico.
…Thursday’s departure had a more reflective tone as those who stayed in Tijuana debated what to do next. Nery and Dania Melgar, siblings who became close friends with Lemus during their journey to the border, were more blunt with their assessment of the situation.
“The caravan is over,” said Nery Melgar, 22. “Everyone is on their own now.”
Some of those migrants are staying in Mexico, and are seeking the advice of expats who have been successful in the move.
Marco Rosales, a Honduran immigrant who has lived in Tijuana for eight years, stood in the street surrounded by Central American migrants eager for his job advice.
“Don’t come here with the mentality of Honduras,” he said. “This is a new country, a new state where you can change yourself if you want to.”
He only had room that morning for a handful to work at another nearby car wash, but he was sure he could find work for more later if they were willing.
“I’m trying to explain to them that you’ll get ahead doing things the right way,” he said, when asked why he had urged them to work instead of joining a march to the border. “If we do things the wrong way we’re not going to get anywhere. If they want to march to close the border it’s not going to accomplish anything.”
Of course, others are still relying on traditional tactics to try and get into America on a permanent basis.
A Honduran woman affiliated with a caravan of Central American migrants gave birth on U.S. soil shortly after entering the country illegally amid growing frustration about a bottleneck to claim asylum at official border crossings.
Border Patrol agents arrested the woman Nov. 26 after she entered the country illegally near Imperial Beach, California, across the border from Tijuana, Mexico, Customs and Border Protection said Wednesday. She was arrested with her 20-year-old husband and 2-year-old son.
The woman, who was eight months pregnant, was taken to a hospital after complaining about abdominal pain the day after her arrest, Customs and Border Protection said. The family was released from custody on Sunday, pending the outcomes of their immigration cases.
In related news, green justice warriors are angry at the Rio Grade border wall construction that is going to go through butterfly habitat.DONATE
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