Some Honduran migrants swim across river to Mexico

World

Thousands of central American migrants, mostly from Honduras are on the move right now in Mexico. They’re resuming their march toward the United States to escape poverty and violence back home.

But the journey hasn’t been easy, some migrants who crossed a river either by swimming or by raft. 

After 24 hours stuck on a bridge between nations the caravan finds another way. Most go back to the Guatemala side, pay a few pesos for an inner tube ride, while others pry a hole in the fence and jump. 

While the stress of it all is too much for the sick and the weak, a few of the strongest managed scavenge a ladder and rope and come back to help others down including a mother named Rosalin. 

The migrants on the bank cheer as she is lowered to the rafts. ‘Si se puede,’ they chant. Yes we can. After a splash of relief from the heat and the thirst, she looks up anxiously for the babies: a five year old daughter named candy and 3 year old son named Carlitos. 

It is stunning to see him here because the day before I spotted him playing inside the Mexican gate. 

The little boy was fascinated by the riot gear and helmets and one member of the Federales display touching humanity amid all the chaos. I assume his family was among the lucky few allowed through for processing, but they were actually separated from candy in the teargassed panic. So Rosalin went back to find her and another way north. 

Bill Weir: “What made you decide to climb onto that ladder?”

Rosalin Guillermo, Honduran migrant: “to complete the dream that I have. This bridge, this river, they can’t stop me”, she says. “I am an all terrain woman.” 

Bill Weir: “There are people who see what just happened and would say you’re using your child as a shield to break the law?”

Rosalin Guillermo, Honduran migrant: “I don’t think we’re abusing the kids,” she says. “we can’t leave them at home. They have to eat. I want them to study, have a good future. I do this for my kids. I ask you with all my heart, wouldn’t your mother do the same for you?”

Bill Weir: “Do you know that President Trump is threatening to use soldiers to keep you out and he has even separated families, he’s taken children like these away from their mother?”

She knows, but says, “we have faith in god. He has the final word.” 

In town they were met with cheers from fellow travelers and a bit of Mexican hospitality. There is shelter here, advice from human rights workers and precious nourishment for the kids. She borrows a phone to call her mom. They’re okay, she tells her, and are not turning back. They will rest here for the night waiting for the caravans, strength in numbers, and are back on the road at dawn. From here, it is a 2,500 mile walk to America.
 

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