US

Protests explode as Tijuana residents rally against Central American caravan's arrival

Mexican citizens in Tijuana protested the invasion of the migrant caravan in their city. Mexican officials said they lack the resources to house the migrant caravan. (Guillermo Arias/AFP/Getty Images)

Hundreds of residents in Tijuana, Mexico, protested Sunday against the Central American migrant caravan that began arriving at the U.S.-Mexico border town over the past week, KSWB-TV reported.

The locals gathered at the monument to Aztec ruler Cuauhtémoc where they chanted, "Out! Out!" in protest to the estimated 2,600 migrants who have caused the unrest since their arrival, The Associated Press reported.

"We don't want them in Tijuana," they shouted while waving Mexican flags, according to reports.

Since Thursday night, U.S. officials closed part of Friendship Park after people threw rocks from the Mexican side of the border at American officials, including San Diego Sector Chief Patrol Agent Rodney Scott, according to KSWB.

"Due to unrest in this location, the area known as Friendship Circle has been closed to visitors until further notice," Border Patrol spokesman Ralph DeSio told the news station.

What else did residents say?

Santiago Alvarado, 29, told NBC News that the caravan was filled with MS-13 gang members and that the migrants aren't grateful to Mexico.

“They’re not thankful for what people have done for them," Alvarado told NBC. “This country is not yours."

Marco-Antonio Gonzalez, 47, whose sons are living in the U.S. as citizens, said he has seen the migrants throw out unwanted food and clothing that wasn't a name brand.

“I was born and raised in Tijuana,” he said. “The way this [caravan] was done was disrespectful. They cause trouble. We don’t know who they are.”

“You have to be humble,” Gonzalez added.

What did Mexican officials say?

Mexican officials said they lack the resources to house the migrant caravan, which is expected to grow to more than 10,000 in the coming weeks as thousands more make their way to the border.

"No city in the world is prepared to receive this — if I'm allowed — this avalanche," Tijuana Mayor Juan Manuel Gastélum said during a news conference Friday. "It is a tsunami. There is concern among all citizens of Tijuana."

President Donald Trump tweeted on Sunday that the U.S. is also ill-prepared for the caravan.

"The Mayor of Tijuana, Mexico, just stated that 'the City is ill-prepared to handle this many migrants, the backlog could last 6 months,' " Trump tweeted Sunday. "Likewise, the U.S. is ill-prepared for this invasion, and will not stand for it. They are causing crime and big problems in Mexico. Go home!"

What did migrant supporters say?

Migrant assistance group Border Angels founder Enrique Morones has criticized Gastélum for his stance on the situation.

"Border Angels is here to say that the immigrants are welcome," Morones said on Saturday during a news conference, according to KSWB. "They are welcome in Playas de Tijuana, they are welcome in Tijuana and they are welcome in Mexico."

One last thing…
Watch TheBlaze live and on demand on any device, anywhere, anytime.
try premium
Exclusive video
All Videos
Watch live and on demand on any device, anywhere, anytime.
Try It FREE for 30 Days
Worth a look
Newsletter

Get the news that matters most delivered to your inbox.