President Donald Trump says the United States will start cutting aid to Guatemala, Honduras and El Salvador as a caravan of thousands of mostly Honduran migrants rolled on regardless toward the US border.
The United Nations said more than 7,000 people were now heading toward the United States, as more migrants joined the original group, including some Central Americans who were already in Mexico.
Trump meanwhile kept up his almost-daily Twitter attacks on the approaching caravan, calling it a national emergency, and saying he had alerted the US border patrol and military.
“We will now begin cutting off, or substantially reducing, the massive foreign aid” that the United States provides to the three Central American countries, said the president – who has seized upon the crisis in the run-up to US midterm elections, reviving the immigrant-bashing rhetoric that helped get him elected in 2016,” he wrote on Monday.
“Sadly, it looks like Mexico’s Police and Military are unable to stop the Caravan heading to the Southern Border of the United States. Criminals and unknown Middle Easterners are mixed in.
“I have alerted Border Patrol and Military that this is a National Emergy (sic). Must change laws!” Trump added.
Mexican authorities had managed to block the migrants on the Mexico-Guatemala border after they burst through a series of barriers on the Guatemalan side on Friday. But many later crossed the river below in makeshift rafts before marching north.