Mexico City preparing for thousands of migrants

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Migrants cross the Suchiate River into Mexico.

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A large group of Central American migrants has resumed its trek toward Mexico City, planning to join several hundreds who have already arrived in the Mexican capital in hopes of finding some way to reach the U.S. border.

It’s an ambitious jump from the city of Cordoba, where many spent the night. The capital is nearly 180 miles (300 kilometers) ahead _ a long distance for people alternately hitchhiking and walking.

The day didn’t start easily; migrants briefly blocked traffic on the busy highway to beseech passing truckers for a ride. None agreed.

Among the group is 42-year-old Yuri Juarez, who says he closed his Internet cafe in Villanueva, Guatemala, after gang members extorted him, robbed his customers and then stole his computers.

He say she knows there’s a “very low” chance of asylum in the U.S. But hesays he’s got no way to work anymore back home.

Mexico’s Interior Ministry estimated over the weekend that there are more than 5,000 migrants in total currently moving through southern Mexico via the caravans or in smaller groups. The ministry said 2,793 migrants have applied for refugee status in Mexico in recent weeks and around 500 have asked for help to return to their home countries.

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