Mexico is preparing for the expected arrival of a new caravan of undocumented Central American migrants at its southern border, official sources said Monday.
A U.S.-bound caravan is scheduled to depart from Honduras on Tuesday, according to Alejandro Encinas, deputy minister of Human Rights, Migration and Population at the Interior Ministry.
To tackle the year’s first wave of organized migration, officials convened a meeting in Tapachula, Chiapas, the southern Mexican state that serves as the point of entry for migrants heading north.
The idea is to avoid violent incidents seen late last year when hundreds of migrants rushed to a Mexico-Guatemala border crossing in an attempt to get into Mexico at any cost.
“We hope there is order, security and regulation,” said Encinas, adding that those able and willing to show the proper paperwork won’t have any problem getting in.
Mexican officials have also been in contact with authorities in Honduras, El Salvador and Guatemala, he said.
“The countries of origin also shoulder responsibilities and we hope they will fulfill their responsibilities,” Encinas told reporters.
Honduran media reported unknown organizers have publicized the caravan on social networks, instructing would-be asylum seekers to gather on Jan. 15 at the bus station in the northern Honduran city of San Pedro Sula.
In mid-October, a caravan set out from the same city and was joined by others on its journey to the U.S. border. Officials say some 6,000 migrants eventually concentrated along Mexico’s border with the United States which has taken a more anti-immigrant stance.
The U.S. embassy in Honduras has been posting messages on Twitter to discourage migrants from undertaking a “voyage that is destined to fail.”
Thousands of Hondurans who made the journey as part of the first caravan “returned regretful,” the embassy said.
The Honduran government urged its citizens not to join the caravan.
Deputy Foreign Affairs Minister for consular and migratory issues, Nelly Jerez, said citizens should “stay at home and seek opportunities in this country where God had us be born.”
“More than 2,000 Hondurans are in a shelter in Mexico, but remain in a precarious situation despite all the humanitarian aid,” said Jerez.
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