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The huge migrant caravan, which at one point swelled to more than 10,000 migrants as it made its way to the US border from southern Mexico, has now disbanded as Mexican authorities have offered temporary visas to migrants – although organizers say they will still travel to the US
Organizer Luis Villagran told Fox News that about 80% of the caravan migrants, or about 9,000, received a Multiple Migration Form (FMM). This travel visa allows them to travel freely to Mexico temporarily.
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Villagran told Fox News that although the caravan is splitting up, all migrants from the bloc are heading to the United States in an attempt to make their way into the country.
The caravan departed from Tapachula, Mexico earlier this week and met with little resistance from Mexican authorities. Organizers also said the caravan underwent a police check where the Mexican National Guard, immigration officers and state police were present – but authorities let the caravan pass “freely”.
The migrants organized the caravan specifically a week ago because the Mexican authorities did not provide the temporary documents to Tapachula.
Now, after a week and a walk of less than 25 miles, they have indeed received what they wanted, with Mexico granting them legal status to head to the US border without being in Mexico illegally. Under Mexican laws, migrants cannot cross the Mexican state of Chiapas without papers. It was a response to the 2018-2019 caravans.
Villigran said last night less than 3,000 migrants boarded buses provided by the Mexican immigration office to take them to the customs office. Today, more than 9,000 have been issued.
It’s one of many massive caravans in recent years that have made their way to the US border, including one in October last year – which are generally dismantled by the Mexican authorities before reaching the border. However, as with this caravan, it is not because the caravans are dismantled that the migrants involved stop moving north.
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The United States has seen massive numbers of migrants, with caravan-sized numbers of migrants being encountered every few days by officers along the border. There were more than 234,000 encounters in April alone, and that number is expected to increase over the summer.
Meanwhile, the Biden administration has been blocked from ending Title 42 public health deportations — through which a majority of migrants have been deported since March 2020. The move to end the order has been seen as a motivating factor for more migrants to try their luck entering the United States
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The Biden administration has come under heavy criticism for its handling of the crisis, with Republicans linking the surge to the administration’s rollback of Trump-era politics and lax domestic enforcement – combined to calls for mass amnesty in Washington DC
The Biden administration has blamed “root causes” like poverty, violence and climate change for the rise in numbers and has rolled out a number of initiatives to address those root causes – led by the vice-president. President Kamala Harris.
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On Friday, President Biden, along with a number of Western Hemisphere leaders, unveiled a “Los Angeles Declaration” at the Summit of the Americas – which sets out common principles related to migration. The United States has pledged to take a number of concrete steps, including an expansion of work visas, refugee resettlement, and millions of dollars in funding for refugees and migrants across the hemisphere.
However, the leaders of Mexico, Guatemala, Honduras and El Salvador were not present.
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