SAN DIEGO — Mexican officials say members of a Central American migrant caravan who rushed the US border Sunday will now face deportation from the country.
The Interior Ministry of Mexico said any would-be asylum seekers in the group had hurt their cause by “violently” and “illegally” trying to cross the border and that they now face deportation from the country.
Groups of Central American migrants have been converging on the Mexican border city for days in their quest to gain entry to the United States. Their presence has drawn Mexican troops, protesters and fiery rhetoric from President Donald Trump and Mexican officials.
As crowds amassed at San Ysidro, around 500 migrants overwhelmed federal and local Mexican police blockades and rushed toward the border, said freelance reporter Alfredo Alvarez, who was in the crowd. The crowds were made up of men, women and a lot of children, Alvarez said.
With bridge and pedestrian border crossings closed in both directions, the migrants headed for the cargo area where the railroad crosses, where they appeared to get close to the border wall, Alvarez said.
Raw video from Mexico showed the moment migrants rushed toward the US.
Border Patrol agents used tear gas to keep caravan members back from the border fence, CBP confirmed. The agency said some agents were hit by “projectiles” thrown from the other side of the border. Agents also detained “multiple people” who tried to cross the border illegally, according to CBP.
Mexican federal and local authorities stopped the migrants, Mexico’s Interior Ministry said. Those identified as having tried to illegally cross from Mexico into the United States will be processed for deportation to their home countries, the statement said.
The Interior Ministry described Sunday’s incident as “acts of provocation” and warned that far from helping the migrants’ cause, it could result in a serious incident on the border.
The mayor of Tijuana said on Sunday that he would not let the migrants’ actions damage the city’s relationship with its neighbors across the border. Many residents of Tijuana work, study and visit the United States each day, and the border closures affect them, too, Juan Manuel Gastélum said on Twitter on Sunday.