About 20 volunteer US lawyers gave legal workshops Friday just across the border in Mexico to Central American asylum seekers who traveled in a "caravan" that has been harshly criticized by President Donald Trump . But the smaller group did not disband and has begun arriving on buses at the border city of Tijuana.
"The wall doesn't look that tall", said Kimberly George, a 15-year-old girl from Honduras as she looked toward a stunted barrier a few feet away. 'I really want to cross it'.
"Thanks to god we're here", added a 34-year old worker from Guatemala -accompanied by two children.
A caravan of illegal aliens from Honduras, which Mexican authorities claims they broke up after feeling the wrath from President Donald Trump earlier this month, has made its way to the United States.
While Mexican authorities did prevent some workers from making their way towards the border -with initial estimates being upwards of 1500 people- it remains unclear how federal authorities will handle the asylum seekers. The caravan has triggered vitriol from USA conservative media outlets, the White House and many Trump supporters, who see it as a mass effort to illegally cross into the United States.
The caravans have been a fairly common tactic for years among advocacy groups to bring attention to Central American citizens seeking asylum in the U.S.to escape political persecution or criminal threats from gangs.
Honduran Angel Caceres dipped a tortilla into a plate of refried beans and rice, his first meal in two days.
Q:Why is a caravan of migrants headed to the US border?
The wire service said Trump has threatened to scrap the agreement if Mexico does not crack down on Central Americans coming through.
"For those seeking asylum, all individuals may be detained while their claims are adjudicated efficiently and expeditiously, and those found not to have a claim will be promptly removed from the United States", Secretary of Homeland Security Kirstjen Nielsen says. "They're people who have suffered", Mujica said. Immigration attorney Michelle Stavros said only about 50 percent of asylum applicants are approved.
By late Wednesday back in Tijuana, children in dirt-smeared shirts played ball in a cramped courtyard in one of the shelters as others bedded down on the hard floor inside, covering up under blankets or whatever extra clothes they had on hand as the temperature dropped.
But she was uncertain whether she and her daughter should stick with the group or try to cross the border alone and find their way to Houston where she had a friend ready to offer shelter.
This month, the Trump administration announced a new push for legislation that would make it more hard to obtain refuge. "I don't know what to do", she said.