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  • A caravan of thousands of migrants from Central America, en route to the United States, pauses as it makes its way to San Pedro Tapanatepec from Arriaga, Mexico October 27, 2018

    A caravan of thousands of migrants from Central America, en route to the United States, pauses as it makes its way to San Pedro Tapanatepec from Arriaga, Mexico October 27, 2018 | Photo: Reuters

Published 29 October 2018
Opinion

The U.S. military said it will send 5,200 troops to the border within a month as the first caravan treks through Oaxaca, Mexico and third reach Guatemala. 

Around 5,200 U.S. military troops will deploy to the border with Mexico in anticipation of the Migrant Caravan or Central American Exodus as it has been branded by participants, heading northward from Central America to in order to escape the overwhelming violence and inequality in their home countries. President Trump claimed in a Monday tweet: "This is an invasion of our Country and our Military is waiting for you!"

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More Migrant Caravans To Leave Honduras, El Salvador: Source

The U.S. military will deploy over 5,200 troops, including soldiers who will be armed, to bolster President Trump's efforts to secure the border with Mexico, a senior U.S. general said on Monday.

"I think the president has made it clear that border security is national security," General Terrence O'Shaughnessy, head of the U.S. military's Northern Command, told a news conference in Washington.

The Wall Street Journal had reported Monday morning that the Pentagon will likely send about 5,000 troops to the U.S. southern border, much higher than original estimates of 800 to 1,000 soldiers.

The announcement comes just a week ahead of the Nov. 6 mid-term congressional elections. Over 2,000 U.S. National Guard forces are already at the border stationed there since last April during the previous Central American caravan.

Since the first caravan left San Pedro Sula, Honduras on Oct. 12, President Donald Trump threatened to end aid to Central American countries and has claimed that caravan participants are gang members and criminals.

Stirring up anti-immigration and economic worries ahead of next week’s legislator elections Trump tweeted last Tuesday:  "Every time you see a Caravan, or people illegally coming, or attempting to come, into our country illegally, think of and blame the Democrats for not giving us the votes to change our pathetic Immigration Laws! Remember the Midterms! So unfair to those who come in legally." The head of state is hoping to maintain control of Congress till the end of his term. 

Vice President Mike Pence claimed the Exodus was the work of Venezuelan president Nicolas Maduro.

Over the past two weeks, two additional caravans have left on the dangerous journey north seeking refuge and residence in Mexico and the United States.

On late Monday morning, teleSUR filmed Mexican military helicopters flying low blocking members of the second caravan from crossing the Rio Suchiate from Tecun Uman, Guatemala.

The night before Mexican authorities in Tecun Uman cracked down on caravaners killing a 26-year-old Honduran man after he was shot in the head by a rubber bullet, according to The New York Post.

The third caravan began on Sunday out of San Salvador, El Salvador and has already crossed into Guatemala.


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