The arduous journey of Haitian migrants comes to an end in Mexico’s limbo.
Thousands of Haitian migrants attempting to reach the United States have been stranded in Mexico after weeks on the route, traversing mountains and jungles and risking assault and drowning.
Many were persuaded to go on the trek by relatives and friends who had already achieved the American dream – but who often failed to mention the perils that awaited them.
Thousands of migrants, including many Haitians who had previously lived in South America, are stranded in the southern Mexican city of Tapachula, awaiting paperwork that will allow them to continue their journey.
Those who have grown tired of waiting or have run out of money attempt to cross Mexico nonetheless, hoping to avoid being apprehended and deported to Guatemala.
When they approach the US border, however, they find themselves detained once more.
Thousands of migrants, many of them Haitians, have gathered under a bridge in Texas after crossing the Rio Grande River in the hopes of being permitted entry.
Despite the difficulties, Guatemalan migrants continue to flow into southern Mexico.
Murat “Dodo” Tilus wakes up every night with severe pain in his arm, the result of a fall on a Colombian mountain while on his way to join his brother in the United States.
On August 8, he departed Chile with his wife, daughter, and two grandkids, leaving a country that had welcomed him after the 2010 Haiti earthquake that killed 200,000 people.
“My house crumbled (after the earthquake), my family died, so my wife and I decided to leave,” the 49-year-old electrician told AFP.
However, the “Chilean ideal” began to wane in 2018 as the government enacted policies that made life more difficult for migrants.
In today’s Chile, “getting a work permit is extremely difficult.” Everything has become more expensive, so people are leaving in search of a better life,” he explained.
He and his wife Rose Marie raised around $5,000 for the trip, which they embarked on via bus.
They landed at Tapachula after a month-long journey that took them through ten countries.
They are now sleeping in a room in a house they share with four other Haitian families as they await an appointment to have their refugee claim processed.
They are not sleeping on the streets like some refugees because of money supplied by Tilus’ brother.
A backlog of requests for documentation is causing problems for the Mexican Commission for Refugee Assistance.
It has issued 77,559 migration visas so far this year, compared to 70,400 last year. Brief News from Washington Newsday.