Thousands of migrants gathered in Mexico to spend Christmas Eve before crossing the U.S. border. Local authorities estimated the migrant caravan’s daily population to be over 8,000. According to witnesses, most of the migrants were from Central and South America but also from the Caribbean.
Tens of thousands of illegal migrants have crossed the Texas border in recent days, causing U.S. Customs and Border Protection to close international rail crossings in Eagle Pass and El Paso on December 18. Migrants have been travelling north on freight trains from Mexico to the United States, and the restrictions impede bilateral trade.
This week in Eagle Pass, Texas, hundreds of migrants waited in the open air on areas of grass blocked off by the U.S. Border Patrol, which has struggled to handle the number of persons crossing the border and turning themselves into authorities.
Hundreds of migrant families walked along a border highway in Ciudad Juárez over the weekend, looking for a place to cross the Rio Grande river to the U.S. side as police trucks and vans from the country’s migration authority slowly patrolled the levy on the south side.
Texas Governor Speaks Out
Texas Gov. Greg Abbott’s spokesperson said he didn’t have enough information about Biden‘s conversation with López Obrador to comment. However, since taking office, the Republican governor has strongly attacked the Democratic president’s approach to immigration and border enforcement.
“Biden’s deliberate inaction has left Texas to fend for itself,” Abbott said Tuesday in Brownsville, where he signed legislation allocating $1.54 billion to continue construction of then-President Donald Trump’s border wall, which was stalled after the administrations switched in 2021.
According to border security sources who declined to be identified to share preliminary data, the number of migrants apprehended by the U.S. Border Patrol in a single day surpassed 9,000 on Wednesday.
Rural areas in southern Arizona, especially the greater Tucson area, and south Texas have seen significant surges in migration.
Thousands of Migrants Spend Christmas at the US Southern Border
CPB officials stated that operations at the international railway crossing in Eagle Pass restarted early Saturday, but just a portion of the bridge was reopened for vehicle processing.
Biden Administration Playsdown Migrants Crisis
During the news conference, Kirby acknowledged the difficult circumstances.
“The president believes that we’ve got to do better at immigration, and he’s willing to talk and negotiate with members of Congress about immigration policy, just as he is about border security,” he added.
The delegation’s trip to Mexico City “will really be about getting to the migratory flows and talking to President López Obrador and his team about what more we can do together.”
According to the report, authorities encountered migrants more than 300,000 times last month, up from 245,213 in October.
The new figures represent the highest monthly total reported under the Biden presidency.
Large caravans of Central Americans crossed Mexico to reach the United States in 2018 and 2019. In recent years, smaller groups have taken their place.
Last year, a record number of migrants attempted to illegally enter the US-Mexico border.