Nearly 1,000 Venezuelan Migrants Form Caravan, Aim to Reach U.S. Border Amidst Rising Influx

Originally published July 17, 2023 7:02 am PDT

In southern Mexico, almost a thousand migrants, primarily originating from Venezuela, have coalesced into a collective unit this Saturday, setting their sights on the U.S. border in the north.

Having recently breached the Guatemala-Mexico border, the group aims to traverse the risky terrains together, according to The Associated Press.

Waving the Venezuelan flag inscribed with the words “Peace, Freedom. SOS,” the group embarked on their journey along a southern Mexican highway.

The procession included men, women, and children of all ages and was under the constant surveillance of Mexican National Guard patrols.

The migrants disclosed that their entry into Mexico was unauthorized and facilitated by crossing a river that served as a natural border.

Many in the group are homeless and so poor that they were unable to afford basic sustenance in their own country.

Gloria, along with other group members, complained about the inadequate support from Mexican immigration authorities.

They were also disgruntled about the lack of clear guidelines concerning the procedures for advancing or filing for asylum in the U.S.

This assembly of migrants in southern Mexico comes against the backdrop of an unprecedented influx of immigrants from Latin American nations into the U.S. Recent data shows that in the year ending in May 2023, the U.S. authorities encountered close to 2.5 million migrants along the southern border, Associated Press notes.

This marks an increase from the preceding year.

Migrants are commonly subjected to kidnappings, extortions, and violence from armed factions in the region, forcing them to travel in large groups for safety.

Traditionally, Venezuelans seeking refuge have opted for other South American countries like Colombia and Peru.

However, there has been a noticeable shift in this trend.

More are now braving the hazardous journey through the Darien Gap, the jungle-filled expanse between Colombia and Panama, with the U.S. as their final destination.

Meanwhile, a recent Associated Press poll shows two-thirds of Americans say the federal government’s immigration policies oppose the will of the American people.

Screenshot from taken July 17, 2023

“Few adults believe Congress, the Supreme Court, the president, or the political parties are doing a good job upholding the country’s democratic values,” a report on the poll reads. “The public perceives a disconnect between public opinion and existing laws and policies on a range of issues from the economy to immigration to abortion to gun policy.”

“Half of adults say democracy is not working too well or not working at all,” the report went on to say. “Forty percent think it is working somewhat well, and only 10% express an optimistic view of the U.S. democracy. Overall, there has been little change in the public’s view over the past few years regarding the U.S. democracy.”