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20 October 2018, 12:32 | Tara Lloyd
Trump threatens to close Mexico border if migrants not stopped
President Donald Trump threatened to deploy the military and close the southern US border on Thursday if Mexico did not move to halt large groups of migrants headed for the United States from Central America.
In three tweets directed at Democrats and Central American countries, the president called the loosely organized group of migrants, commonly referred to as a caravan, an "assault on our country by Guatemala, Honduras and El Salvador".
Trump also said that if a solution is not found, it could upend the new trade deal negotiated between Mexico and the United States.
There are already about 2,000 National Guard troops stationed along the US border with Mexico, where they have been deployed since Trump ordered them there in April in response to another group of migrants that attempted to seek refugee status in the United States.
Trump has made cracking down on illegal immigration and building a wall that stretches the length of the 1,954-mile (3,145 km) border a keystone of his presidency, but his animus toward Mexico had cooled since Obrador's election in July.
But in Mexico, where protesters alreadyhave been marching in support of the approaching Honduran migrants, caving to USA pressure wouldn't play almost as well.
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"One way or another, we will pass", they chanted, clambering atop USA -donated military jeeps parked at the scene as Guatemalan police looked on.
Launched Saturday from Honduras, the caravan reportedly has grown to more than 4,000 people, including whole families and - in some cases - children traveling without their parents.
In a series of tweets, Trump blamed Democrats, leaders of Central American countries and "existing weak laws" for the influx.
Migrants have been known to cross the river on rafts for years - sometimes encountering authorities along the way, sometimes meeting little resistance as they slipped into Mexico and continued their journey north.
The Mexican government has sought assistance from the United Nations refugee agency to help process migrants claiming refugee status at the southern border, a step that could allow it to disperse the train of people and placate Trump.
Two Central American migrants wait for the train siting on the railway tracks in the Guadalajara Metropolitan area, Mexico on August 10, 2018.
After police held off the migrants, they closed the border gates again.
Yesterday, the migrants made it to the Guatemala- Mexico Border.
"(Criminals) have infrastructure that is built up already and are put into place inside the caravans", he said. López Obrador, the president-elect, will take over December 1.
Waving Honduran flags and carrying umbrellas to protect against the sun, the migrants arrived earlier at the Guatemalan side of the muddy Suchiate River that divides the country from Mexico, noisily demanding they be let in.
"Whoever wants to work in our country is going to have support, is going to have a work visa", he said.
Trump has long touted a need for increased border security, warning criminals and drugs were regularly pouring across the southern border.
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