As of Friday, May 12th about 23,400 migrants were in Border Patrol custody o nthe US-Mexico border

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Under a makeshift tent on the Mexican border, smartphone screens illuminated the faces of a group of migrants hoping to get asylum in the US.

Along with the tens of thousands of other people now stranded in Mexican towns after rushing to the border who still hope they will one day be able to reach the US, they have been told that their best shot at getting asylum is through President Joe Biden’s CBP One app.

While the end of Title 42, Donald Trump’s strict Covid-era immigration policy did not lead to the predicted surge of migrants entering the country, officials said the numbers of crossings reached historic highs in the days prior.

There are still vast numbers of migrants waiting in cities along the 1,950-mile-long international boundary, with around 10,000 people now in Ciudad Juarez alone, according to Marcelo Ebrard, the Mexican Foreign Minister.

Among those still waiting for their chance to plead their case for asylum, a sense of confusion reigned.

Speaking from a camp opposite an immigration processing facility where more than 40 people died in a fire on March 28, Carmen Rodriguez, 40, from El Salvador, said she had been trying to apply for asylum through the White House app. She has already been removed from the US after she scaled a mountain on the Texas border.

After she was caught, Border Patrol drove her eight hours along the boundary to Piedras Negras. It took her six days to walk back. She also unsuccessfully tried to cross into the US over the Rio Grande four days ago. Because she did this before Title 42 expired, she did not face any fines or prosecution. As of Thursday night, people caught crossing illegally can be punished.

Mrs. Rodriguez said she and her partner left El Salvador for the US “because the financial situation is impossible and we could not afford to eat”.


Migrants are returned from the US to Mexico at the Paso Del Norte international bridge, after the lifting of Title 42, as seen from Ciudad Juarez - JOSE LUIS GONZALEZ/Reuters

Migrants are returned from the US to Mexico at the Paso Del Norte international bridge, after the lifting of Title 42, as seen from Ciudad Juarez – JOSE LUIS GONZALEZ/Reuters

Under a makeshift tent on the Mexican border, smartphone screens illuminated the faces of a group of migrants hoping to get asylum in the US.

Along with the tens of thousands of other people now stranded in Mexican towns after rushing to the border who still hope they will one day be able to reach the US, they have been told that their best shot at getting asylum is through President Joe Biden’s CBP One app.

While the end of Title 42, Donald Trump’s strict Covid-era immigration policy, did not lead to the predicted surge of migrants entering the country, officials said the numbers of crossings reached historic highs in the days prior.

There are still vast numbers of migrants waiting in cities along the 1,950-mile long international boundary, with around 10,000 people now in Ciudad Juarez alone, according to Marcelo Ebrard, the Mexican Foreign Minister.

Among those still waiting for their chance to plead their case for asylum, a sense of confusion reigned.

Speaking from a camp opposite an immigration processing facility where more than 40 people died in a fire on March 28, Carmen Rodriguez, 40, from El Salvador, said she hads been trying to apply for asylum through the White House app. She has already been removed from the US after she scaled a mountain on the Texas border.

After she was caught, Border Patrol drove her eight hours along the boundary to Piedras Negras. It took her six days to walk back. She also unsuccessfully tried to cross into the US over the Rio Grande four days ago. Because she did this before Title 42 expired, she did not face any fines or prosecution. As of Thursday night, people caught crossing illegally can be punished.

Mrs Rodriguez said she and her partner left El Salvador for the US “because the financial situation is impossible and we could not afford to eat”.

Gustavo Adolfo, 40, from Venezuela, is also living on the streets of Juarez. He arrived one week ago following a four-month journey during which he was kidnapped, robbed and beaten.

He said every day around 10 people come to their camp after crossing the border and being kicked out by the US authorities. He has not tried to cross into the US and wants to apply legally.

“I’ve already gone through too much to ruin it at the very last moment. I shall wait for my legal access into the US and I intend to go there and start working,” he said.

Would-be migrants being returned from the US to Ciudad Juarez in Mexico on Saturday - JOSE LUIS GONZALEZ/Reuters

Would-be migrants being returned from the US to Ciudad Juarez in Mexico on Saturday – JOSE LUIS GONZALEZ/Reuters

While the locals have mostly been welcoming, there is unease brewing amid Mexicans who feel let down by their country’s “wide-open borders”.

Flor Marquez, 43, lives on a road that runs parallel to the Rio Grande. Her house is 200 meters from the gate where thousands of migrants have been crossing into Texas.

Mrs. Marquez, who works at the local university, said she has been left feeling “insecure” and unsafe around her home.

She criticized the Mexican government for “opening its borders to everyone”, which she fears will lead to a spike in crime rates.

“If the government cannot give a decent life to the Mexicans, forget about coping with so many immigrants,” she said.

“And when the US doesn’t open the gates for the immigrants what’s going to happen with them? They’re going to stay here.”

Shop owner Gabriella Trevilla, 55, said the increase in migrants has left her worried about the safety of her daughter, 19, who crosses the border into Texas every day to study.

“Both governments have to do something. There is already some tension and it is going to increase,” she said.

Several last-minute court actions added to questions about how Mr. Biden’s reworked border strategy will play out, with advocates filing a legal challenge to the new asylum regulation as it was enacted.

As of Friday, May12th, about 23,400 migrants were in Border Patrol custody, slightly lower than earlier in the week, according to a Homeland Security official.

Source: Diario.MX

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