Caravan of Central American asylum seekers arrive at United States border wall

Central American 'Caravan' Migrants to Seek Asylum at US-Mexico Border

One such migrant is Gabriela Hernandez, a pregnant mother of two who fled Honduras and crossed Guatemala into Mexico to join the group heading north.

In terms of CBP capacity at the San Ysidro Port of Entry, Nicole Ramos, an attorney with Al Otro Lado, told BuzzFeed News that the USA immigration agency has room to take in 316 asylum seekers at any given time.

The Trump administration has been tracking the caravan, calling it a threat to the United States.

USA officials say San Diego's border crossing has reached capacity even before a caravan of Central American migrants criticized by the Trump administration began turning themselves in to seek asylum.

Administration officials have railed against what they call America's "catch and release" policies that allow people requesting asylum to be released from custody into the USA while their claims make their way through the courts, a process that can last a year. (AAP) Many of the refugees are travelling with children, and are hoping for asylum. It can hold about 300 people at a time, and officials had been warning that it might fill up.

The migrants prepared to turn themselves over to USA officials, in a direct challenge to the Trump administration, which has vowed to bar the migrants from entering, even though turning them away could violate global law.

Another 50 others camped outside a gate on the Mexican side of the border crossing.

"At this time, we have reached capacity at the San Ysidro port of entry for CBP officers to be able to bring additional persons traveling without appropriate entry documentation into the port of entry for processing", Commissioner Kevin McAleenan said in a statement. Some have dispersed, and others chose to stay in Mexico.

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Heather Crone of advocacy group Show Up for Racial Justice says she's found 80 people across the US who agreed to sponsor caravan members if they're released while their petitions are pending.

Mexicans fared worst among the 10 countries that sent the largest numbers of USA asylum seekers from 2012 to 2017, with a denial rate of 88 percent, according to asylum outcome records tracked by Syracuse University's Transactional Records Action Clearinghouse. The nuptials underscored one of the migrants' greatest fears now that they've reached the border: having their families torn apart once they turn themselves over to US immigration authorities.

On Saturday, as they lingered near the US border at Plaza Viva Tijuana, many appeared tired and ready to move on. As the Post noted, this is the largest caravan this year. She says she received death threats after being released. They said that about 400 of them, many of them women and children, had completed the journey to Tijuana, and some small groups have already been surrendering to American authorities at the San Ysidro Port of Entry in recent days. No estimate was given on the number of border-crossing attempts that had taken place. And yet, many of these migrants are likely to eventually enter the United States, at least temporarily, as the law allows, so that their claims of fear and persecution in their home countries can be heard before a court. Some climbed the wall to sit or wave signs under the watchful eyes of U.S. Border Patrol agents.

USA authorities have advised there may be delays in their ability to process such a large group of migrants and that some "may need to wait in Mexico as [border officials] work to process those already within our facilities".

Maria de Los Angeles, 17, said she felt confident after speaking with an attorney that USA authorities would release her while her case moves through the courts because she was traveling alone with her 1-year-old son.

"Victims include a landscaper snatched in a Home Depot parking lot in Rialto and held for days despite his son's attempts to show agents the man's United States passport; a NY resident locked up for more than three years fighting deportation efforts after a federal agent mistook his father for someone who wasn't a USA citizen; and a Rhode Island housekeeper mistakenly targeted twice, resulting in her spending a night in prison the second time even though her husband had brought her U.S. passport to a court hearing". She said she fled her home in Honduras because the father of her son threatened to kill her and their child. "We don't think it's a really good move", said the Rev. Patrick Murphy, who heads the Catholic-run Casa del Migrante in Tijuana, a 120-bed shelter that overlooks the city.

Earlier, the migrants gathered at a wall in Tijuana for an emotional meeting with a few hundred supporters in San Diego's Friendship Park.

Before buses arrived at the rally Sunday at a fence that reaches to the ocean, about 100 supporters on the Mexican side of the border marched along the beach, shouting "Alerta" (attention) to the sound of a drumbeat. They had backpacks and blankets and were hoping to get their turn Monday to approach the US facility.

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