Tapachula, Mexico, Apr 4 (EFE).- Thousands of migrants of various nationalities are spending the nights in migrant stations in this city on Mexico’s southern border waiting for authorities to grant them passage through Mexican territory so that they can travel to the US border and try to enter that country.
Among the migrants are more than 500 Africans.
Just like these migrants who on Thursday had entered Tapachula 15 days ago from the Democratic Republic of Congo, Angola and Cameroon, mainly, another 2,000 people from India, Haiti, Cuba and other countries – some 20 countries in all – are also waiting to be accorded transit documents to pass through Mexican territory.
All of them are living in uncertainty because they don’t know if Mexican immigration authorities will allow them to travel northwards.
Net immigration of Mexicans to the US fell to zero several years ago. Today’s northbound migrants come overwhelmingly from the Central
American nations of Guatemala, El Salvador and Honduras, though people from more distant lands have also come to see Mexico as an entryway to the United States.
The migrants now gathered in Tapachula include whole families who have decided to leave their countries fleeing poverty and violence, including pregnant women and many others with babies in their arms.
They look tired after traveling through many countries after leaving their homelands and traversing much of Latin America until they arrived at the Siglo XXI immigration station.
Outside the station, there are dozen latrines, but despite that the area appears unhealthy. Children cry and their parents are clamoring for the Mexican government to let them through, since they don’t want to remain in Mexico.
Michee Nikumu told EFE that he is from Congo and is traveling with his pregnant wife and son, all of them suffering from hunger and thirst since they don’t have any money. In addition, they are all sick with fever and diarrhea.
In the case of the woman, her health is delicate because she suffers from urinary tract infections and her pregnancy is thus classified as “high risk.”
Nikumu said that they arrived in Cuba after leaving their homeland and traveling through Panama, Costa Rica, Honduras and Guatemala before entering Mexico.
The migrants said that on Wednesday personnel from the National Migration Institute pre-registered those who are seeking safe passage, but so far they have heard nothing further. They also said that they have been the targets of discrimination.
US President Donald Trump, who wants to build a wall on his country’s border with Mexico, often rails at Mexican authorities for not doing enough to keep third-country migrants from reaching the border.