Sep 10, 2019
WOLA's Adam Isacson and Maureen Meyer covered nearly 400 miles of the Mexico-Guatemala border during a mid-August visit. Amid a U.S.-inspired crackdown on irregular migration, they saw National Guardsmen, checkpoints and patrols, a nearly collapsed refugee reception system, and thousands of asylum seekers from Cuba, Haiti, and Africa stranded after crossing half the planet.
The crackdown, which began in June, has reduced migration but endangered people fleeing violence, while benefiting smugglers and their corrupt accomplices. By assenting to Trump administration pressure, Meyer and Isacson explain, Mexico has assumed the political costs, but has not yet dealt with the humanitarian and social consequences on vivid display in the southern border zone.