A U.S.-bound migrant caravan that has been traveling on foot through Mexico for more than a month continued its slow trek over the weekend through the Gulf Coast state of Veracruz, with far fewer people than it started out with.
Comprising between 4,000 to 5,000 mostly Central American and Haitian migrants at one point, by Friday, Nov. 26, it numbered about 500 people, according to local media reports.
Most of the other migrants had accepted offers from Mexico’s National Institute of Migration (INM) to be taken to shelters set up in specific states to regularize their stay in in the country for a fixed period of time on humanitarian grounds.
A second caravan of more than 2,500 migrants, which set out on Nov. 18 from the city of Tapachula, in Mexico’s southeastern state of Chiapas and on the border with Guatemala, agreed to dissolve after reaching a similar agreement on Tuesday, Nov, 23, with INM officials.
Central America is seeing an unprecedented exodus of undocumented migrants this year, apparently driven out of their homes by poverty worsened by the covid-19 pandemic.
Between January to August of this year, Mexico reported the entry of more than 147,000 undocumented migrants, triple the total number of undocumented migrants who entered in 2020, according to the INM.