Migrant Caravan Leaves Mexico City And Heads Toward US-Mexico Border

Migrants from caravan camping on the ground
Spencer Platt / Getty Images

An estimated 5,500 mostly-Honduran people from Central America are departing from Mexico City and heading for the U.S.-Mexico border, most of them through Tijuana, which lies about 1,700 miles northwest of Mexico City. It’s the last stage of their journey that began nearly a month ago when they departed from San Pedro Sula in Honduras. Their size grew as they made their way to Mexico’s capital city. The Los Angeles Times reported that the migrant caravan has moved through southern Mexico on foot or by car, bus, or truck and stayed largely in a sports field that was converted into a refugee camp about a week ago. Their stay at the camp allowed them to rest and leave Mexico City refreshed. About 3,000 of them opted to seek refugee status in Mexico City instead of continuing on to the U.S.

Many are leaving the camp via trains they catch at a nearby elevated subway station. After getting off the train, they will travel along a major Mexico City highway. Those in the caravan are largely young men, but families, women, and children are among them as well. Some seek out or happen across bus stops and hope for transportation from buses or other passing vehicles. They say that any difficulties or dangers faced along the way are worth it as they flee what they consider violent and dangerous conditions in their home countries. Reactions to the huge numbers of migrants making their way through the capital city were mostly supportive and encouraging, with aid stations located at various spots along the way and providing food and medicine. Once they succeed in acquiring transportation, most of the migrants began their trek to Queretaro, a city located about 135 miles northwest of Mexico City.

There are multiple locations along the U.S.-Mexico border through which members of the migrant caravan could seek to enter the United States. Most, however, make their way to Tijuana as it’s believed to be the safest point of entry. The journey to Tijuana and then to California is longer than the one to Texas, but stories of gangs that prey on migrants deters many from taking that route.

When they reach the U.S. border, migrants will face thousands of troops that the president has ordered to control what he has deemed an “invasion.” Despite recent proclamations by President Trump that he has taken steps to make their ability to seek asylum more difficult, that is just what most of them are likely to do.