The border town between Guatemala and Mexico begins to be a pressure cooker with more than 3,000 people who make up the new Migrant Caravan from Honduras and who hope to cross the Rodolfo Robles bridge that separates both countries to continue their journey to the US . This Saturday morning, hundreds of migrants gathered in front of the gate that separates T ecún Umán (Guatemala) and Ciudad Hidalgo (Mexico) . Some tried to enter the force, which caused the Mexican National Guard to respond with pepper gas and the temporary closure of the border to people and vehicles, which until then had been open leaving the way to groups of 20 migrants.

Once the situation has calmed down, the authorities of the National Migration Institute of Mexico have reopened the border, allowing only people with documents in blocks of 20 to pass through, so that 300 migrants have already entered Mexico , of which approximately 100 are minors.

Although initially, the Secretary of Foreign Affairs of Mexico, Marcelo Ebrard , had transmitted to the new President of Guatemala, Alejandro Giammattei , that his country "will not let them pass and will use everything in its hands to prevent it from happening, "the reality is that migrants are dropping. This responds to the offer made on Friday by the President of Mexico, Manuel López Obrador, of 4,000 jobs to Central American migrants traveling in the Caravan that departed the night of January 14 and the early morning of the next day of the Honduran town of San Pedro Sula and to which people from El Salvador have also joined. "There is work in our country," said López Obrador.

Jesús García is a 25-year-old migrant who intends to benefit from one of these work permits to live in the Mexican city of Guadalajara , as he explains in statements to EL MUNDO from a bus that takes him to Tecún Umán. He travels with his wife, his daughter of one year and two months, his sister and her daughters, aged 7 and 13, fleeing from the lack of job opportunities in Honduras. A native of Santa Bárbara , García also regrets the corruption that exists in his country, chaired by a "narco dictator", in reference to Juan Orlando Hernández. "We are almost 5,000 people among men, women and children, because there we have no future, because what we earn, we spend it in hours," he says, while waiting for Mexico to help him in and, otherwise, "no it is going to be another to throw us into the Suchiate River and grab us migration to get the papers. "


Thus, in recent days, the Mexican National Guard has proceeded to detain every migrant who crosses the Suchiate River that separates that country from Guatemala and crosses through a rudimentary raft. To do this, dozens of agents are on the banks of the River in the Mexican part to avoid this illegal step used every day by migrants and merchants. It should be remembered that the Government of Donald Trump and that of his Mexican counterpart Manuel López Obrador reached an agreement in June 2019 to deploy 6,000 members of the National Guard composed of federal, military and marine police on the border with Guatemala, in order to avoid migrants trying to travel north to fulfill their 'American dream'.

This meant a drastic change in relation to the first Migrant Caravan that also left Honduras on October 13, 2018 and was able to travel freely throughout Mexico to reach the US border in Tijuana , where many migrants managed to cross and some already they are residing in that country waiting for a judge to grant them the requested asylum.

In addition, the new Caravan has coincided with the start of the new Government of Guatemala, chaired by the conservative Alejandro Giammattei, who has already announced that he will not allow migrants to travel with young children without being their parents or guardians . To do this, he has sent the Attorney General's Office to the border of Tecún Umán to verify that all the children and adolescents traveling are accompanied.

According to the Government of Guatemala, a total of 3,543 migrants have arrived between January 15 and 16 . This has surpassed the Casa del Migrante in the capital of the country, which is why this agency has asked the population to support it with water, non-perishable food, underwear and coats. On the last night alone, he has received more than 1,100 migrants who are already heading towards the Mexican border.

Meanwhile, the new president of Guatemala, Alejandro Giammattei, has denounced that he does not find the annexes of the controversial agreement of the Third Safe Country reached on July 26, 2019 between the then President, Jimmy Morales , and Donald Trump, according to which, the Hondurans and Salvadorans who intend to emigrate to the US must first apply for asylum in Guatemala. Likewise, the agreement establishes that the US can send to Guatemala migrants from Honduras and El Salvador requesting asylum.

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  • Mexico
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