Mexico announces new border restrictions to curb COVID

Agence France-Presse

Posted at Mar 19 2021 11:26 AM

Mexico announces new border restrictions to curb COVID 1
Dozens of Central American migrants are expelled from the United States by the Paso del Norte-Santa Fe international bridge, from El Paso, Texas, United States to Ciudad Juarez, state of Chihuahua, Mexico, on March 18, 2021. Herika Martinez, AFP

MEXICO CITY - Mexico announced Thursday restrictions on non-essential crossings at its border with Guatemala to curb the spread of Covid-19, a move that coincides with increased migrant flows towards the United States.

The government also prolonged the closure of its northern border with the United States to all but essential land traffic in response to a pandemic that has left more than 196,000 people dead in Mexico.

"To prevent the spread of Covid-19... restrictions will be imposed on land transit for non-essential activities on the northern and southern borders," the foreign ministry said on Twitter.

It said the restrictions would begin on Friday and remain in effect at least until April 21.

The Mexican-US border has been closed to non-essential land traffic such as tourists and occasional visitors for the past year, but it is the first time such measures have been imposed on the border with Guatemala. 

Mexico's southern border has been patrolled since 2019 by the National Guard to stop migrant caravans crossing over.

The new border restrictions coincide with an increase in arrivals of migrants, mainly Central Americans, heading to the United States to flee violence and poverty in their countries.

US President Joe Biden this week urged migrants not to come to the United States.


© Agence France-Presse

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