A chaotic scene unfolded today as the first large group of migrants from the recent caravan made their way to the United States border. Mexico’s Milenio TV captured the scene on video (watch above).
Several hundred Central American migrants on Sunday pushed past a blockade of Mexican police standing guard near the international border crossing between Tijuana and California to pressure the U.S to hear their asylum claims.
The migrants carried hand-painted American and Honduran flags and chanted: “We are not criminals! We are international workers!” The group mostly consisted of men, although some women pushed small children ahead in strollers.
Dozens of Mexican police with riot shields stopped the migrants ahead of the crossing Sunday.
More than 5,000 migrants camped in and around a sports complex in Tijuana after making their way through Mexico.
Many within the caravan plan to apply for asylum and Sunday, marched toward the border to demand their asylum applications be processed.
The demonstrators are in front of the federal police now. They said they’re going to pass peacefully and with respect. pic.twitter.com/Uh8OiJ0tWi
— Adolfo Flores (@aflores) November 25, 2018
The peace ended when hundreds of migrants tried to push past Mexican police.
CNN: Around 500 migrants overwhelmed federal and local Mexican police blockades and rushed towards the US border near Tijuana, Mexico. Unclear if they managed to get across.
— Shimon Prokupecz (@ShimonPro) November 25, 2018
As a result, the US Customs & Border Protection shut down the border crossing between Tijuana, Mexico and San Diego, California.
Pedestrian crossings at the San Ysidro port of entry are also suspended at both the East and West facility.
— CBP San Diego (@CBPSanDiego) November 25, 2018
The northbound border – cars are being turned around and Mexican federal police have created a barrier as CBP officials shut down the US border entry and military soldiers line up on the other side at San Ysidro Port of Entry pic.twitter.com/6CVXOQ8919
— Annie Rose Ramos (@Annie_Rose23) November 25, 2018
US Border Patrol has just launched tear gas into Mexico. Breeze carrying it hundreds of yards. Parents running away with choking toddlers. #migrantcaravan
— Chris Sherman (@chrisshermanAP) November 25, 2018
Donald Trump reacted to the news Sunday after tweeting:
General Anthony Tata: “President Trump is a man of his word & he said he was going to be tough on the Border, and he is tough on the Border. He has rightfully strengthened the Border in the face of an unprecedented threat. It’s the right move by President Trump.” Thanks General!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) November 25, 2018
This came a day after Trump tweeted that, “Migrants at the Southern Border will not be allowed into the United States until their claims are individually approved in court.” He went on to say “….we will CLOSE our Southern Border. There is no way that the United States will, after decades of abuse, put up with this.”