22:11 GMT +316 February 2019
Listen Live
    Central American migrants begin their morning trek as part of a thousands-strong caravan hoping to reach the U.S. border, as they face the Pico de Orizaba volcano upon departure from Cordoba, Veracruz state, Mexico, Monday, Nov. 5, 2018. A big group of Central Americans pushed on toward Mexico City from a coastal state Monday, planning to exit a part of the country that has long been treacherous for migrants seeking to get to the United States.

    Mexican Governor Says No More Caravans in His City

    © AP Photo/ Marco Ugarte
    Latin America
    Get short URL
    0 0 0

    Miguel Riquelme, the Governor of Coahuila, a Mexican state near the US border, told local newspapers that he will not allow more migrants to travel through the area.

    The governor said it wasn’t up to him to stop the new 2,000-person caravan when it crossed Mexico’s southern border nearly three weeks ago because that’s the federal government’s job, but now, as it has reached his state, he’s doing everything he can to deal with it in the most humanitarian way possible, including the deployment of hundreds of Mexican federal, state and local law enforcement officers to ensure security.

    READ MORE: Pentagon Repositions 250 Troops to Border in Response to Migrant Caravan

    “In the case of the state government, we will not allow more migrants to travel to Coahuila,” Riquelme told reporters.

    Migrants are housed inside a warehouse while the government processes temporary asylum claims. They have been provided with food, blankets and healthcare but have not been allowed to come and go at will. Mexican officials said the tough policy was needed to ensure their safety. Out of nearly 2,000 migrants, only 139 have so far obtained their official cards allowing them to leave the shelter and travel freely throughout Mexico.

    Mexican authorities are processing the applications in order to determine whether the migrants have a criminal past, noting that any criminal would be deported immediately, yet so far no one has been deported. The Security Secretary for Coahuila, Jose Luis Pliego Corona reportedly wants the US to know that Mexican officials are doing everything possible to identify and remove any criminal threat in the group.

    Mayor Claudio Bres said he can only keep receiving the caravans with migrants for three months, at most, and worried about more caravans behind this one.

    “It would make it better if the Democrats, Republicans, the US government, the Mexican government and the Honduran government would work together to put on the table something that will resolve this for good,” he said, noting that the caravans could disturb the city’s $22 billion cross-border trade with the US.

    A previous caravan that arrived at the Mexican town of Tijuana last year was comprised of around 5,600 migrants. At one point, around 500 of them attempted to storm the US border, unwilling to follow regular entrance procedures and wait for their entrance applications to be approved.

    The US President Trump has been struggling to obtain $5.7 billion in funding for border security and the construction of a wall on the border with Mexico, which is intended to stop illegal immigration. The project has faced strong opposition from Democrats, who blocked a budget bill in a vote in the Senate, leading to the longest government shutdown in US history.

    Related:

    Pentagon Repositions 250 Troops to Border in Response to Migrant Caravan
    US Prepared to Prevent Latest Migrant Caravan From Illegal Entry - Nielsen
    New US-Bound Migrant Caravan Departs From Honduras - Reports
    Trump Says Mexico Doing Nothing to Stop New Migrant Caravan
    Two Child Rapists Caught Entering US With Illegal Migrant Caravan – Report
    Another Migrant Caravan Sets Off From Honduras Toward US - Reports
    Trump Says US Prepared to Handle Massive Caravan Forming in Honduras
    Tags:
    Migrant Caravan, caravan, officials, migrants, Mexico