USA and the UK
A “migrant caravan” made up of thousands of migrants on-route to the US, has been halted at the Guatemalan border.
The group, made up of mostly migrants from Honduras, were intercepted by Guatemalan security personnel in the south-eastern village of Vado Hondo. They blocked a road, preventing the migrants from continuing their journey.
The Guatemalan president’s office issued a statement saying:
“Guatemala’s message is loud and clear: These types of illegal mass movements (of people) will not be accepted, that’s why we are working together with the neighboring nations to address this as a regional issue,”
What is a “caravan”?
A caravan is a term used to describe the way in which groups of migrants travel together. Every year thousands of Central American migrants attempt to make it to the US this way, often travelling by foot.
The caravan currently heading for the US intends to travel through Guatemala and Mexico before reaching the US border.
Why are they fleeing Honduras?
The migrants, most of which originate from Honduras, are fleeing because of poverty and violence in their own country. Honduras has a notorious history of violence, having one of the highest murder rates in the world. This, combined with economic hardship and recent climate disasters such as hurricanes means that many want to leave. These issues have been worsened by the COVID-19 pandemic and now Honduran migrants are more desperate than ever. They hope to find work and make a better lives for themselves in the US.
The caravan is also making it’s journey just days before Joe Biden becomes the new president of the United States. Biden has made promises to end the strict-immigration policies that came into place under the Trump administration, including the deportation of unaccompanied migrant children. This has given hope to many migrants who dream of the US.
However, a senior Biden administration official has told the caravan “don’t come, you won’t get in straight away”. But did not provide any details as to when the situation at the border could change.
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Thousands of migrants clashed with security in Guatemala: (Image credit BBC News]