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Mexico Braces for New Caravan of Central American Migrants


A caravan of about 2,500 Central Americans and Cubans is currently making their way north through Mexico to reach the U.S. as their final destination.

Mexico is bracing for the “mother of all caravans,” to each Mexico.  Mexico Interior Secretary Olga Sanchez Cordero has said a caravan of migrants from El Salvador, Honduras and Guatemala could be forming. “We have information that a new caravan is forming in Honduras, that they’re calling ‘the mother of all caravans,’ and they are thinking it could have more than 20,000 people,”

But a WhatsApp group calling for people to gather Saturday in El Salvador to set off for Guatemala only has about 206 members.

Activist Irineo Mujica, who has accompanied several caravans in Mexico, said reports about “the mother of all caravans” were false, claiming “this is information that (U.S. Homeland Security Secretary Kirstjen) Nielsen is using to create fear.”

His group, Pueblo Sin Fronteras, said in a statement there was no evidence the new caravan would be that large, noting “there has never been a caravan of the size that Sanchez Cordero mentioned.” Indeed, past caravans hit very serious logistical hurdles at 7,000-strong.

He and others suspect Donald Trump may be trying to create fears of a big caravan to turn the U.S. national agenda back to the immigration issue.

Later Thursday, Honduras’ deputy foreign minister, Nelly Jerez, denied that a “mother of all caravans” was forming in her country.

Mexico appears to be both tiring of the caravans and eager not to anger the United States. It has stopped granting migrants humanitarian visas at the border, and towns along the well-traveled route to Mexico City sometimes no longer allow caravans to spend the night.

Mexican President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador said Thursday that Mexico is doing its part to fight immigrant smuggling.

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