The more than 8,000 Central and South American migrants who make up the migrant caravan known as the “Exodus of Poverty” continued their journey early this morning from the municipality of Escuintla to Mapastepec, in Chiapas, to reach the state of Oaxaca.

On the fourth day of their journey, the thousands of men, women, and children from Haiti, Guatemala, Honduras, El Salvador, Venezuela, and Cuba advanced along the coastal highway of Chiapas to head north.

According to Luis Rey García Villagrán, an activist with the Human Rights Centre for Human Dignification, nine out of ten migrants in the caravan want to stay in Mexico to work, “but not in the southeast” of the country, and are not looking to cross the border into the United States.

Given the meeting between President Andrés Manuel López Obrador and the US Secretary of State, Antony Blinken, on 27 December, García Villagrán recalled that “migration is a right, not a crime” and that “the southern Mexican border is nobody’s backyard”.

“Migrant women, children, and families will never be a bargaining chip for political, ideological, and electoral differences,” the activist added.

The self-named “Exodus from Poverty” caravan left Tapachula on 24 December. Thousands of families and individuals fleeing violence, persecution, insecurity, and poverty in search of better living conditions are traveling in the caravan.

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