14:06 GMT +319 July 2019
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    People take part in a gathering in support of the migrant caravan in San Diego, U.S., close to the border wall between the United States and Mexico, as seen from Tijuana, Mexico December 10, 2018

    Migrant Groups in Tijuana Demand Reparations from US for Long Wait

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    Two groups of Central American migrants marched to the US Consulate in Tijuana on Tuesday demanding that they be processed through the asylum system more quickly and that the US must either grant entry or pay $50,000 to each of them in reparations.

    The groups arrived separately at the consulate, both unaware of the other’s demands, the San Diego Union-Tribune reported. The first group, consisting of 100 migrants, demanded either payment of $50,000 per person or granting entry into the US. The organizer, Alfonso Guerrero Ulloa of Honduras, said they chose that amount of compensation as a group.

    “It may seem like a lot of money to you. But it is a small sum compared to everything the United States has stolen from Honduras,” he claimed.

    The group’s letter gave the US Consulate 72 hours to respond but added that they have not yet decided what they will do if their demands were not met.

    READ MORE: Hundreds of People From Migrant Caravan Breach US-Mexican Border — Reports

    The second letter came from another group of migrants, demanding that the US speed up the asylum process, requesting that up to 300 asylum seekers be admitted at the San Ysidro Port of Entry each day instead of the 40 to 100 which officials are currently admitting.

    This second group claims that the slow pace violates American and international laws that call for an immediate processing of asylum seekers, and places vulnerable migrants at risk while blaming the US for “a refugee crisis caused in great part by decades of US intervention in Central America.” Some members of this second group of 50 migrants had participated earlier in a hunger strike that also demanded an acceleration of the US asylum process. The letter didn’t give any specific timeline for the US to respond.

    The second group also met with Mexican immigration officials asking them to stop working with the municipal police in deporting caravan members.

    The caravan of 6,000 migrants started arriving in Tijuana almost a month ago, demanding to cross the US border while fleeing their Central American home countries. Approximately 700 have voluntarily returned to their country of origin, 300 have been deported, and 2,500 have applied for humanitarian visas in Mexico, according to Xochtil Castillo, a caravan member who met with Mexican officials Tuesday.

    President Trump has repeatedly stated that the caravan is an “invasion” into the US and has been vehemently lobbying for a wall along the southern border, threatening to shut down the government if the funding for such a wall cannot be secured.

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    Migrant Caravan, reparations, demands, migrants, Mexico, Tijuana, United States
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