Morgan Phillips, Daily Mail, June 6, 2022
One of the largest migrant caravans of all time is making its way to the U.S.-Mexico border, just as President Biden heads to the Summit of the Americas in Los Angeles.
The caravan now is 11,000 strong and on Monday departed Tapachula on the Mexico-Guatemala border and the group is expected to swell up to 15,000.
Many of the migrants come from Venezuela, Cuba and Nicaragua, three countries whose authoritarian rulers have been left out of this week’s summit.
On Monday Mexican President Manuel Lopez Obrador confirmed that he would not attend the gathering in protest because leaders from Cuba, Nicaragua and Venezuela had not been invited. An administration official cited ‘lack of democratic space’ and ‘human rights situations’ in the trio of nations as reasoning for leaving them out.
Foreign Minister Marcelo Ebrard will attend the conference in López Obrador’s place.
Other migrants in the caravan hail from Haiti, Guatemala, Honduras, El Salvador and even India, Bangladesh and some African countries.
The caravan is making its way northward as the Biden administration is fighting in court to end Title 42, the pandemic-era Centers for Disease Control (CDC) restriction that allows border agents to quickly expel migrants.
Title 42 was supposed to end on May 23 but a federal judge in Louisiana granted an injunction on Friday that prevented the government from ending the policy.
Nearly 2 million migrants have been expelled under the policy since it was first implemented.
The Biden administration has stressed that the CDC has the authority to end Title 42 because it is a public health order, not an immigration order, but both Democrats and Republicans have called on the administration to rethink its ending of the policy.
Department of Homeland Security (DHS) officials have said they expect up to 18,000 migrants per day once Title 42 is lifted. Border resources are at capacity when 5,000 migrants attempt to cross per day.
U.S. authorities stopped migrants more than 234,000 times in April, one of the highest marks in decades as the Biden administration prepares to lift pandemic-era restrictions on claiming asylum.
The figure is a 22-year high and surpassed the previous high of Biden’s presidency of 209,906 set in March, and the highest level since March 2000, when it reached 220,063.
World leaders attending the summit with Biden are expected to discuss ‘regional solutions to regional problems,’ namely, the immigration issue that has been a drag on Biden’s popularity.
Meanwhile, Biden is preparing to finalize a first-of-its-kind deal with Spain to resettle refugees from the Western Hemisphere that continue to flood into the U.S., a Wednesday evening report revealed.
The pledge from Spain is coupled with Canada significantly expanding its refugee commitment in the region, according to an internal planning document reviewed by Axios – and could help the U.S. deal with the prevailing migrant crisis at the southern border.
Both deals appear to be linked and contingent on bringing in migrants for work in both Spain and Canada.
The commitments are expected to be announced at the summit this week.