- Title: Migrant families block U.S.-mexico border bridge
- Date: 10th October 2019
- Summary: MATAMOROS, MEXICO (OCTOBER 10, 2019) (REUTERS) FENCE ACROSS ROAD AT U.S.-MEXICO BORDER BRIDGE WITH POLICE IN RIOT GEAR SEEN ON U.S. SIDE AND MIGRANT FAMILIES IN ROAD ON MEXICAN SIDE MIGRANTS BLOCKING BRIDGE'S PEDESTRIAN WALKWAY MIGRANTS SEATED ON ROAD ON BORDER BRIDGE MIGRANT CHILDREN CHANTING (Spanish) "WE WANT TO STUDY" MIGRANT FAMILIES ON BRIDGE (SOUNDBITE) (Spanish) HEAD OF MIGRANT ATTENTION FOR THE MUNICIPALITY OF MATAMOROS, GLADYS CANAS, SAYING: "But this isn't the right way to use this bridge to achieve your goal. So, I respect everything that you are saying, and I'm going to keep trying to help and mediate, and Mexican authorities are never going to use force, but you are breaking our laws. Please understand that." (SOUNDBITE) (Spanish) ANONYMOUS MIGRANT PROTESTER, SAYING: "For approximately eight to nine days the buses haven't come. There are many people who now want to go back to our countries because we don't want to be here any longer. Everyone is saying: tomorrow, tomorrow." MIGRANT FAMILIES ON BRIDGE (SOUNDBITE) (Spanish) ANONYMOUS MIGRANT PROTESTER, SAYING: "All of us here want an opportunity, but if that's not possible then tell us definitively, but don't mislead us." MIGRANT FAMILIES ON BRIDGE (SOUNDBITE) (Spanish) ANONYMOUS MIGRANT PROTESTER, SAYING: "Give us a solution, because we don't want to be here any more. I've been here for nearly two months. I have my appointment soon (with U.S. authorities), but what's happening, there are people there who have now had two appointments, they already went to their second appointment, and now they'll have another appointment, so what's going to happen? What's going to happen to us? Because if they're saying more time, more time, where are we going to end up?" MIGRANTS BLOCKING BRIDGE (SOUNDBITE) (Spanish) ANONYMOUS MIGRANT PROTESTER, SAYING: "I have a child with special needs, and I need to buy orthopedic braces for him and try to get ahead for him, and give my daughter an education who is here with me. And, that's what I want more than anything, to work in the United States, we're not here to disturb anybody, we just know that the United States is a big, powerful country." VARIOUS, MIGRANT FAMILIES ON BRIDGE
- Embargoed: 24th October 2019 19:31
- Keywords: immigration Central America blocked emigration asylum U.S.A bridge refugees caravan border Mexico protest migrants
- Location: MATAMOROS, MEXICO
- City: MATAMOROS, MEXICO
- Country: Mexico
- Topics: Asylum/Immigration/Refugees,Government/Politics
- Reuters ID: LVA001B0IO9JB
- Aspect Ratio: 16:9
- Story Text: U .S. asylum seekers camped out in a dangerous Mexican border town occupied a bridge to Brownsville, Texas on Thursday (October 10), leading to the closure of the crossing.
Hundreds of the migrants have been camped for weeks on the end of the bridge in Matamoros, Mexico, a city known for cartel control of people trafficking and gang violence.
Many of those camped out are awaiting court dates for hearings in the United States weeks or months later under a U.S. policy called the Migrant Protection Protocols (MPP).
Video shot by a Reuters photographer showed men, women and children, some lying on blankets, mid-way across the bridge over the Rio Grande. The path into the United States was blocked by a razor wire-topped gate, behind which stood dozens of U.S. border agents.
Some on the bridge said they were trying to cross as a group into the United States, and were frustrated that court dates kept on being pushed backwards, leaving them uncertain of how long they would be stuck in Mexico.
More than 51,000 migrants, mostly asylum seekers, have been returned to Mexico under MPP. At least 8,000 have been sent to Matamoros, a border city in crime-wracked Taumaulipas state, since the policy was expanded in July from other parts of the U.S.-Mexico border.
MPP migrants who have been living in tents or on sidewalks at the end of the bridge, reliant on food from volunteers and water for washing from the river, recently expressed concerns to Reuters that their court dates would be cancelled or indefinitely postponed.
Their sense of uncertainty comes amid news of shifting U.S. policies. The U.S. Supreme Court issued a decision last month that would allow the U.S. government to deny asylum to people who have passed through a third country, such as Mexico, and not requested refuge there first.
(Production: Veronica G. Cardenas, Manuel Carrillo)
- Copyright Holder: REUTERS
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