End of ‘Remain in Mexico’ sparks hopes in migrants waiting at US border

By Guadalupe Penuelas

Ciudad Juárez, Mexico, Jul 3 (EFE).- In Mexico’s Ciudad Juárez on Sunday thousands of migrants were hopeful of being able to cross into the United States due to the recent cancellation of the Migrant Protection Program (MPP), also known as Remain in Mexico.

Former president Donald Trump established this program at the beginning of 2019, forcing migrants who arrived at the southern border to wait out their immigration and asylum applications in Mexican territory.

Despite this measure to prevent the increased migration flow to the US, the situation continued to worsen.

Last week, the eyes of the world were on San Antonio, Texas, after a truck trailer was abandoned with 67 migrants inside. More than 50 died, including 27 from Mexico.

Recently, the US Supreme Court denied the states of Texas and Missouri their appeal to keep MPP in force, putting an end to the process that allowed border authorities to send asylum seekers to Mexican territory.

One of the undocumented migrants with new hope is María de Monserrat, originally from the southern state of Oaxaca. She has been with her family for eight months in the Casa del Migrante shelter and told EFE she was happy that the MPP has been removed.

She said she and her family are desperate as they are running out of financial resources.

“I fled from Oaxaca with my children, because of drug trafficking there. The situation we live in is very difficult,” she said.

Another case is that of Neri Felipe Roligan, originally from Nicaragua. Previously, he crossed into the US and was returned by the MPP program and now with this measure lifted, he has faith that he will be able to enter.

Pedro Antonio Gómez Pineda, also from Nicaragua, told EFE that perhaps things will move faster now.

“It’s hard here, thank God they’ve already removed it because it’s going to help us a lot. God, continue to touch their hearts so that everything goes well and we can move our families forward,” he said.

He said that on Thursday he has an appointment with the immigration authorities to be able to cross. His father is waiting for him in the US.

Father Francisco Javier Calvillo, director of the Casa del Migrante, declared that the new measure fills them with “joy.”

“We are going through a difficult and critical moment for the migrants who died inside a trailer in Texas. The reaction was immediate, to remove the MPP,” he said.

Calvillo hopes that with the elimination of the MPP, migrants can cross, and that dignity and life will be respected.

The number of migrants crossing the US-Mexico border has reached record numbers.

US Customs and Border Protection data shows more than 1.7 million undocumented migrants were detained at the US-Mexico border in fiscal year 2021, which ended on Sep. 30 – the highest ever recorded. Meanwhile, Mexico deported more than 114,000 foreigners in 2021.

Mexican president Andrés Manuel López Obrador and US president Joe Biden, will have a meeting on July 12, with one of the main issues on the agenda being migration, Mexican Foreign Minister Marcelo Ebrard said. EFE


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