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Fleeing a nightmare

Veronica Barajas, Staff Writer

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Thousands of migrants have arrived at the United States and Mexico border after traveling 4,000 km from Central America. Most are fleeing persecution, extreme poverty and violence.

The kourney began on October 12, 2018, when a group of approximately 160 Hondurans decided to set out for the US and Mexican border. The fear of traveling alone led many to join the caravan. “If we were to go alone, I’d be scared. But in the caravan, there are human rights organizations with us and there’s media coverage,” said Joel Noriega, a Honduran heading north in hopes of “supporting my family.” (USA Today)

The Hondurans began their journey from the town of San Pedro Sula which is often referred to as the “murder capital of the world.” Murders in Honduras and El Salvador have dropped 27% in 2017, according to CBS, but they still remain the most violent countries due to their street gangs and corruption.

Many of the street gangs abuse local business owners and families. Many Hondurans requested asylum in Mexico in 2017, but due to the earthquake that struck Mexico, the office shut down for 45 working days and the asylum request were slowed down. This led many of the Hondurans to become desperate and flee their country.

By October 15, the Associated Press reporters estimated that about 1,600 Hondurans had gathered together at the border with Guatemala. The Government of Guatemala attempted to close the Guatemalan- Honduran border but after several hours officials backed down.

Jimmy Morales the president of Guatemala requested hiring transportation for anyone who wanted to return. Morales also requested air transportation for women, children and elderly.  As the caravan crossed Guatemala, more migrants joined, including people from El Salvador. By The month of November, the caravan grew to about 4,000-5,000.

President Donald Trump and his cabinet have called the caravan a threat to the US. Trump labeled them “an invasion.” On November 21, Trump tweeted, “There are a lot of criminals in the caravan. We will stop them. Catch and Detain!…” Trump has responded to the caravan by deploying about 5,800 troops to the southern border to “Harden it.” During the month of November the caravan attempted to make a rush at the border. US border patrol officers responded by using tear gas to push them back.

Although there have been  threats along the way, the caravan members are not letting that stop them. Some have entered illegally trough San Diego’s San Ysidro border crossing. But many are still waiting in Tijuana, Mexico, to legally cross by requesting asylum.

 

REUTERS
Honduran man protects child during a clash between Mexican police and migrants.

BBC
Migrant Caravan Journey

REUTERS
A migrant family, part of a caravan of thousands traveling from Central America to the United States, run away from tear gas in front of the border wall between the U.S. and Mexico in Tijuana, Mexico, November 25, 2018. REUTERS/Kim Kyung-Hoon

Veronica Barajas, Staff Writer

Veronica is a senior at Rocky Mountain High School. She is adventurous, outgoing, and loves to travel and meet new people. She likes spending time reading...

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