Tue, 07 Dec 2021

VERACRUZ, Mexico: Mexican authorities discovered more than 400 migrants in the back of two semi-trailers on November 19, traveling near migrant caravans heading north.

The migrants were later placed in custody by federal immigration agents.

After visiting the migrants, Tonatiuh Hernndez Sarmiento, from the Veracruz Human Rights Commission, said, "There were more than 400," including children, pregnant women and ill people.

During the North America Leaders' Summit, held in Washington on Thursday, the leaders of Mexico, the U.S. and Canada discussed immigration and agreed to increase the paths for legal migration, and pledged to expand their protection for migrants and address the causes for their migration.

Of the Washington meeting, Alejandra Macas, director of NGO Asylum Access Mexico, said, "It was not something substantial. I see it as stagnant, there are not advances," according to the Associated Press.

Also, Maureen Meyer of the Washington Office on Latin America, said reaffirming migrants' and asylum seekers' rights is positive, "but actions on the ground, particularly in Mexico and at the US-Mexico border, continue to violate the rights of migrants," as reported by the Associated Press.

Since 2019, security forces have stopped and broken up migrant caravans, so the one currently in Veracruz is the first to advance this far in the past two years.

The Mexican government previously offered humanitarian visas to those in the caravan to reduce their numbers, but some remained suspicious and continued walking, while others who received the documents reported being returned to Tapachula near the Guatemala border.

Haitian Abel Louigens, who decided to join the caravan that left Tapachula on Thursday with some 2,000 other migrants, said he would settle wherever he could find work in Mexico and only enter the U.S. legally, adding, "I can not risk them sending me back to my country," as reported by the Associated Press.

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