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“We need a respectful, mutual listening, free of ideology and predetermined agendas.” Pope Francis, Let us Dream, December 2020

Images at southern border ‘wound the soul,’ says Mexican bishop

The secretary-general of the Mexican bishops’ conference has expressed dismay at the sight of Mexican security forces scuffling with a caravan of Central American migrants trying to enter the country via its southern border with Guatemala.

‘We make a strong call for the (National Immigration Institute) and the (National Guard) to carry out its work respecting the dignity and (human rights) of migrants, avoiding all aggression and damages (against) these brothers, whose only crime is seeking a better life,’ tweeted Auxiliary Bishop Alfonso Miranda Guardiola of Monterrey.

‘These images wound the soul and show Mexico, as the elder brother (in the region,) kicking its younger Central American brother,’ Bishop Miranda continued, referencing Mexican President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador, who recently described Mexico as assuming an “elder brother” role in Latin America.

Hundreds of caravan travellers forded the Suchiate River, which separates Mexico and Guatemala, on 20th January, only to be rebuffed by members of Mexico’s National Guard, who used tear gas on the migrants, along with physical force.

The actions reflected Mexico’s increasingly robust response to migrants arriving at its southern border, including Central American caravans, which are being thwarted upon entering the country.

Picture: Members of Mexico’s National Guard hold their shields to block migrants in Ciudad Hidalgo, part of a caravan travelling to the United States near the border between Guatemala and Mexico. Hundreds of Central American migrants waded across the Suchiate River into southern Mexico in a new test of US President Donald Trump’s Central America strategy to keep them away from the US border. (CNS photo/Jose Torres, Reuters).