Central American 'Caravan' With Women, Kids Reaches Border

About 130 migrants are hoping to find asylum in US
By Newser Editors and Wire Services
Posted Apr 26, 2018 7:41 AM CDT
Central American 'Caravan' With Women, Kids Reaches Border
Central American girls traveling with a caravan of Central American migrants play at a shelter while their parents organize accommodations for the night in Tijuana, Mexico, on Wednesday.   (AP Photo/Hans-Maximo Musielik)

About 130 Central Americans, mostly women and kids, have arrived at the US-Mexico border in a "caravan" of asylum-seeking immigrants that has drawn the fury of President Trump. Two busloads arrived late Tuesday in the Mexican border city of Tijuana at two migrant shelters just steps from one of the most fortified stretches of border, per the AP. They joined another 50 or so who arrived in Tijuana over the last week or two. Four more busloads of about 200 Central Americans—mostly women and children but including some men—also were expected to arrive in Tijuana, says a coordinator for Pueblo Sin Fronteras, which is organizing the effort. US lawyers planned to lead clinics later this week on US asylum law to tell the immigrants what to expect when they seek asylum. The first groups plan to try to enter the US on Sunday at San Diego's border crossing.

US Customs and Border Protection has space to hold about 300 people at the crossing, says the director of the agency's San Diego field office. If asylum seekers make it through initial screenings with asylum officers by establishing "credible fear" of being returned to their homelands, they're allowed in and face what can be lengthy proceedings before US immigration judges, often wearing ankle monitors to track their movements. Trump and senior aides have portrayed the caravans and the asylum-seekers as evidence of a dysfunctional border and a serious threat. Taxi driver Jovanne Torres, who says he fled his hometown in El Salvador after a gang threatened to kill him and his wife, says Trump's attacks make him doubt whether he'll get asylum for himself, his wife, and his young daughters, but he still plans to try. "Trump's words have made it difficult for us," he says.

(More Central America stories.)

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