Antony Blinken To Visit Mexico As Massive Illegal Migrant Caravan Heads Toward The United States

A massive migrant caravan is making its way to the United States’ southern border.  Thousands of mostly South and Central American migrants arrived Sunday in the Mexican town of Alvaro Obregon after traveling more than nine miles from Tapachula with the hope of reaching the southern US border…  

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S Secretary of State Antony J. Blinken is set to visit Mexico City Wednesday to discuss the recent surge in illegal immigration as a migrant caravan said to number thousands of people inches toward the southern US border.

Blinken, 61, will meet with Mexican President Andrés Manuel López Obrador alongside Homeland Security secretary Alejandro N. Mayorkas and White House homeland security adviser Liz Sherwood-Randall.

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“Secretary Blinken will discuss unprecedented irregular migration in the Western Hemisphere and identify ways Mexico and the United States will address border security challenges, including actions to enable the reopening of key ports of entry across our shared border,” the State Department said in a news release. “Secretary Blinken will reaffirm the United States’ commitment to the Los Angeles Declaration for Migration and Protection, and underscore the urgent need for lawful pathways and additional enforcement actions by partners throughout the region.”

The leaders of the caravan are carrying a banner that says, “exodus from poverty.” As the New York Post points out, however, economic hardship does not qualify one for asylum:

If Biden cared to stop them, he would have the Border Patrol conduct expedited hearings on the border, determine that economic hardship does not qualify the crossers for asylum, and turn them back.  If Biden cared to stop them, he could follow the rules, which says that asylum-seekers must apply in the first safe country they enter — that is, Mexico, not the US.  If Biden cared to stop them, he would force people who want to apply to enter the US to do so from another country. He said he was doing so, with the CBP One app. 

Except the app accepted everyone who applied, even those who didn’t qualify, and even worse, Biden went back on his word. People are crossing the southern border by the tens of thousands without using the app.  More than 2 million people illegally have entered the United States in each of the past two fiscal years. It is a wave of poverty that is overwhelming Chicago, El Paso, Denver, New York and more.

Ahead of the meeting, Homeland Security officials have debated ways that Mexico can help lower the numbers at the US’ southern border – including controlling the railways that migrants use to travel north, moving migrants south, and providing incentives to not journey to the border.

The gathering comes as President Biden has faced increased pressure from both Republicans and his own party over the crisis at the US-Mexico border.

Earlier this month, the White House failed to clinch billions of dollars in aid for Ukraine, Israel, and the border when leaders became unable to reach a consensus over border policy changes, CNN reported

Blinken’s trip to Mexico also coincides with the movement of a massive migrant caravan – the largest in over a year – making its way north.

At least 8,0000 asylum seekers – mostly from Cuba, Haiti, and Honduras – set off for the US on Sunday.

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The numbers may swell to 15,000 people, migrant rights activist Luis Garcia Villagran cautioned. There have also been more than 730,000 migrant encounters at the southern border since Oct. 1, US Customs and Border Patrol sources said. There have also been days in December alone when Border Patrol met over 10,000 people at the border, the New York Times reported.

Last week, Biden called Obrador to discuss the worsening situation at the border, CNN said. The two leaders came away from the call agreeing that additional enforcement was “urgently needed” so that key ports of entry that were previously suspended could be reopened, the outlet explained.

The US typically relies on Mexico to reduce the numbers of southern migrants, but “the Mexicans still have a relatively limited capacity,” former US ambassador to Mexico Earl Anthony Wayne told CNN.

“Their immigration force is underfunded and small. Also, they use the National Guard occasionally to stop people but that’s only good for stopping people for short periods of time and hasn’t seemed to hold up very well. And you still have networks of smugglers,” he explained.✪

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