Mexico Will Not Use Military Force to Deal With Influx of Migrants

Mexico Will Not Use Military Force to Deal With Influx of Migrants

President Donald Trump has raised alarms about a caravan of Central American migrants as it approached the United States, with its members planning to apply for asylum on reaching the United States.

In recent weeks, thousands of mostly Central American migrants have arrived in Tijuana by caravan.

Mexico should deport migrants trying to enter the U.S. back to their home nations, Donald Trump has said, adding that many members of the so-called caravan were criminals and that the United States would permanently seal its border if needed.

On Sunday, hundreds of caravan members, including women and children, were peacefully protesting when they were stopped by Mexican authorities, who told them to wait for permission.

The closures came after about 500 migrants overwhelmed police blockades at another crossing nearby and rushed toward the border, said freelance reporter Alfredo Alvarez, who was in the crowd. In recent days, Mexican authorities and others have anxious about the economic effect of the United States closing down such an important crossing for trade and travelers.

Trump announced on Saturday that his administration was working on a deal with Mexico to keep asylum seekers at America's southern border in Mexico.

USA military personnel and Customs and Border Protection officers gather along the southbound lanes of the San Ysidro port of entry, November 25, 2018, in San Diego, California, at the US border with Mexico.

Numerous migrants had gathered earlier in the day to protest against being forced to stay in Tijuana instead of being allowed to cross and seek asylum in the US.

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Authorities on the US side used tear gas to disperse the would-be crossers, the journalists told CNN.

Earlier in the morning, a group of Central Americans staged a peaceful march to appeal for the U.S.to speed up the asylum claims process, but their demonstration devolved as they neared the crossing with the US and some saw an opportunity to breach the border.

Fani Caballero, 32, a migrant from Honduras, sat by the train tracks, within sight of USA agents on the other side of the border fence. Many say they are fleeing violence and poverty in Honduras.

On Sunday, hundreds of migrants made their way through Tijuana towards the border.

Milenio TV showed images of migrants climbing over fences and peeling back metal sheeting in an attempt to enter the US.

"Mexico should move the flag waving Migrants, many of whom are stone cold criminals, back to their countries", Trump tweeted early Monday morning. The migrants in that episode also reportedly threw rocks and bottles at USA authorities.

"For now, we have agreed to this policy of Remain in Mexico", Mexico's incoming interior minister, Olga Sanchez Cordero, said.

The fate of the migrant caravan has become a heated political debate in the United States, with Trump and his supporters claiming that secure borders take priority over accepting asylum seekers.

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