While illegal crossings drop along U.S. border, migrants in Mexico grow desperate

While illegal crossings drop along U.S. border, migrants in Mexico grow desperate

Ciudad Juárez, Mexico — Desperate and exhausted, the migrants gathered around a tree that offered them some shade from the unforgiving sun.

They had traveled from countries throughout Latin America, including Colombia, the Dominican Republic, Ecuador, Guatemala, Honduras, Peru and Venezuela. Some of them were parents traveling with small children, including toddlers. Others were young men. Some of the teenagers appeared to be unaccompanied minors traveling without their parents.

All of them shared a common goal: entering the U.S., which was just a few yards away. But standing in their way were miles of razor wire and other barriers erected by the state of Texas at the direction of Gov. Greg Abbott to deter migrants from crossing into the U.S. illegally.

blocked the measure at the request of the Biden administration. 

“The inhumane part is in … the optic, right?” Torres said near a stretch of the border near El Paso that Texas has fortified with razor wire and additional fencing. “That’s what people perceive it to be.”

Torres acknowledged migrants could be cut by the wire. Asked if that’s part of the deterrence objective, he said, “Yes.” But Torres noted that Texas officials provide medical aid to migrants who sustain injuries or who are otherwise in distress.

“We’re here protecting our border, but also we’re not going to … just let somebody stand there, have an injury,” Torres said.

Abbott and other Texas officials have credited their actions — from the razor wire, to arrests of migrants on state trespassing charges — for the marked decline in migrant crossings in recent months, which has been more acute in the Lone Star State than in Arizona and California.

But federal officials believe the main catalyst is an aggressive crackdown on U.S.-bound migrants by Mexican officials, who have ramped up efforts to stop migrants from boarding trains and buses that would take them closer to the American border. They’re also deporting some migrants to southern Mexico.

Still, some migrants like Rene have made it to northern Mexico despite the crackdown, and are willing to wait indefinitely for a chance to make it to the U.S.

“We came searching for the American dream,” he said.


Source: cbsnews.com