About 10,000 people have already joined onto a migrant caravan on its way through Mexico and thousands more people could still join in what may become the largest migrant caravan to march to the U.S. southern border.
On Monday, Fox News reported the migrant caravan set out from the city of Tapachula, on Mexico’s southern border with Guatemala, heading north towards the U.S.
The caravan is expected to grow to about 15,000 people on its way north, which would make it the largest migrant caravan to reach the U.S. southern border.
The migrants in the caravan primarily consist of people from Venezuela, Cuba and Nicaragua, though the Guardian reports the caravan also consists of people from Haiti, El Salvador, Honduras, Guatemala and even people from India, Bangladesh, and some African countries. The caravan is expected to travel along what is known as the coastal route to reach the U.S. southern border.
Luis Villagran, the caravan’s organizer and director of the non-profit Center for Human Dignification, told Fox News that there were around 9,500 people in the caravan on Monday, but more people are continuing to join. He said the caravan currently stretches more than 51 kilometers (about 32 miles) from beginning to end.
Villagran said there were between 100 and 150 members of Mexico’s National Guard, state police and personnel from the Mexican National Migration Institute (INM) at the first police checkpoint for the caravan, but authorities ultimately let the caravan continue on its way.
The caravan started out on Monday, on the same day the U.S.-hosted Summit of the America’s began in Los Angeles. In a Monday press statement, the U.S. State Department said President Joe Biden and Secretary of State Antony Blinken will attend the summit, where they will “meet with heads of state and other leaders from North, Central, South America, and the Caribbean to discuss building a democratic, sustainable, and resilient future.”
On Friday, Haitian members of the gathering migrant caravan told Fox News he hopes Biden will fight to end a COVID-19 pandemic-era policy that allowed the U.S. to deny entry to migrants, over concerns of the spread of diseases. The Biden administration has tried, in recent months, to end the policy, known as Title 42. Last month, a federal judge halted the Biden administration’s efforts to wind down Title 42.
“[Biden] promised the Haitian community he will help them,” the migrants, who were interviewed by Fox News, said. “He will recall Title 42. He will help us have real asylum.”
“Now we need him to keep his promise,” a Haitian migrant added.