By KELIN DILLON
On Sunday, Sept. 5, hundreds of migrants from Central American countries flowed into the Mexican town of Tapachula, Chiapas, from the nearby Guatemalan border, with the aim of either waiting there on the status of their asylum applications or immediately proceeding further north to the United States.
This is the fourth major caravan to enter from Tapachula in the past week, although the previous three had largely consisted of Haitian migrants.
While many of the migrants have choses to continue to the U.S. border, hundreds of new entrants to Mexico have remained lingering in Chiapas without solutions for housing, health care or employment, overwhelming the area and its natives.
“Services have been exceeded and there is a high number of floating population. A solution is urgently needed, since it is important that the rights of migrants be respected, and especially that the rights of the local population are respected,” said president of the College of Civil Engineers of the Southern Border Sergio Flores.
As for the members of the caravan that decided to head north, Mexican immigration agents and National Guard dissolved the movement some 40 kilometers away from Tapachula in the municipality of Huixtla. Some 50 people of the 500-strong caravan were detained to transfer units of the National Institute of Migration for further action.
Many human rights organizations and agencies affiliated with the United Nations have denounced the violent methods the Mexican National Guard has used to apprehend illegal migrants in the country.