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No buses for now, weary caravan migrants set to resume march

City Sonia Perez D. | AP October 31 at 10:29 PM JUCHITAN, Mexico – Thousands of weary Central Americans in…

JUCHITAN, Mexico – Thousands of weary Central Americans in a migrant caravan aiming to reach the United States had their visions of quick transportation hundreds of miles ahead to Mexico City dashed Wednesday as dozens of hoped-for buses failed to materialize.

The migrants took the day off from walking and hitching rides in packed trucks from small town to small town as representatives tried to negotiate rides for all 4,000 or so in hope of relief from the long and exhausting grind.

But as the day wore on there was no sign Mexican authorities intended to accede to the demand, and by evening leaders acknowledged it was not going to happen.

“The attempt to travel by bus failed , “Coordinator Walter Cuello said.

After spending the night at a city-owned property on the outskirts of the southern city of Juchitan, the migrants wandered around looking for something to eat as classic songs by Mexican singer Vicent e Fernandez, known as “the king of ranchera music,” played in the background.

Red Cross personnel bandaged the swollen feet of Honduran farmer Omar Lopez, who had pounded the hot asphalt of highways every day for the last two weeks after spending nights on concrete sidewalks with just a thin sheet of plastic for cover. Lopez said playing soccer back home had given him stamina but the “exaggerated” walk has taken its toll.

“The sacrifice is worth the effort,” Lopez said. “I promised to buy my son a real motorcycle and I’m going to make good. I promised him many other things … I also want to give them education. Everything good costs money. “

Amid the increasing exhaustion of migrants, a Guatemalan woman gave birth to the first-known caravan baby at a hospital in Juchitan. Mexico’s governmental National Human Rights Commission said it had arranged for medical attention for the woman who was 28 weeks pregnant, and the girl was healthy.

The plan for Thursday was to set out around 3am, taking advantage of the cool pre -day and morning temperatures to trek to Santa Maria Jalapa del Marques, about 35 miles (57 miles) to the west.

The migrants had not said what route they intended to take northward or where on the US border they planned to reach, and Juchitan, still about 900 miles from U.S. soil, was something of a crossroads. Choosing Jalapa del Marques as the next destination appeared to indicate they were opting to travel through Oaxaca state’s eponymous capital instead of turning north towards the Gulf coast state of Veracruz, the latter a common transit route toward McAllen, Texas.

In Washington on Wednesday, White House Press Secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders praised Mexico for stopping the migrants from getting rides. “Mexico has stepped up in an unprecedented way,” Sanders told Fox News. “De har hjulpet med å stoppe mye af transporten af ​​disse personer i disse campingvogne, forcing dem å gå. De har hjulpet oss på nye måder for langsomt dette ned, for at bryde dette op og holde det fra at flytte så aggressivt mot USA. “

The Mexican Government, in fact, has taken a fairly contradictory attitude to helping or hindering The first caravan, reflecting the country’s balancing act: Officials do not want to irk Trump, but Mexicans themselves have long suffered migrament as migrants.

For the first week of the caravan, Mexican federal police sometimes enforced obscure safety rules, forcing migrants off paid mini-buses, citing insurance regulations. De har også stoppet noen overlastede pickupbiler som transporterer migranter og tvinger dem til at gå af. But in recent days, officials from Mexico’s immigrant protection agency have organized rides for straggling women and children on the caravan as a humanitarian effort.

A police officer has routinely stood by as migrants piled aboard freight trucks.

A second, Kleiner groep van 1.000 of zo migranten die hun weg naar Mexico stonden op maandag was trailing some 250 miles terug. They spent Tuesday night in the city of Tapachula.

Behind them, a third group of migrants from El Salvador had already made it to Guatemala, and on Wednesday a fourth group of about 700 Salvadorans set out from the capital, San Salvador, med planer om å gå til USA border, 1,500 miles away.

Salvadoran man Jose Santos, 27, brought his baby son with him on the quixotic quest.

“I did not want to go, but I’m unemployed and I have to get money to buy food for my son, “Santos said.” There is no work here, and the violence never stops. “

The caravans combined represent just a few days worth of the average flow of migrants to the United States in recent times years. Similar caravans have occurred regularly over the years and passed largely unnoticed, but U.S. President Donald Trump has seized on them to try to make border security a hot-button issue less than a week before midterm elections.

The Pentagon has announced it will deploy 5,200 troops to the Southwest border, although federal law restricts the military from engaging in law enforcement on US Soil. Dus hun rol zou grotendeels beperkt zijn tot activiteiten zoals het aanbieden van helikopterondersteuning voor grensbeslissingen, installatie van concrete barrières en voertuigonderhoud, in plaats van detaining migranten.

Trump zei woensdag dat het aantal zou kunnen gaan zo hoog als 15.000. He also tweeted: “We will NOT let these caravans, which are also made up of some very bad thugs and gang members, into the U.S. Our Border is sacred, must come in legally. TURN AROUND! “

Worn down from long miles of walking and frustrated by the slow progress, many migrants have just done that, dropping out and returning home or applying for protected status in Mexico. De initiale gruppen er signifikant reduceret fra dets estimerede peak på mere end 7.000 migranter. A caravan in the jump ultimately fizzled to just about 200 people who reached the U.S. border at San Diego.

Mexican Interior Secretary Alfonso Navarrete Prida said about 2,300 have applied to stay in Mexico under a government plan, and hundreds have more accepted assisted repatriation.


Associated Press writer Peter Orsi in Mexico City contributed to this report.

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