Thousands of migrants have gathered under and around a Texas bridge on the border with Mexico. The US government faces the challenge of managing the large number of asylum seekers.
According to an estimate from the local authorities, 12,000 migrants are involved. Most of it comes from Haiti. From Mexico, they were able to cross the Rio Grande to the U.S. Some families have been sitting by the bridge for more than six days.
There they built a makeshift camp:
After the devastating earthquakes in 2010, many Haitians moved to South America. When it became more difficult to work in Rio de Janeiro after the 2016 Olympics, many moved on foot, by bus or car to the US border.
It is unclear what has now led to the sudden influx of the large number of migrants from Haiti. According to AP news agency, a possible statement would be that the US government has announced that vulnerable asylum seekers are no longer simply allowing vulnerable asylum seekers to the US. “A sense of despair spread among migrants,” says the head of Legal Affairs of non-profit organization Haitian Bridge Alliance, which assists Haitian migrants.
The lawyer for a migrant shelter on the Mexican side of the border suspects that people have decided to go to the US based on rumors of upcoming changes in US immigration policy.
President Biden has reversed some of his predecessor Trumps inhumane immigration policy, but an arrangement that came into effect during the corona crisis to be able to return migrants quickly is still in place. On Friday, a judge ruled that that scheme should no longer be applied to families. The Biden administration has appealed that ruling.