Migrant caravan advances after police blockade in Mexico

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ARRIAGA, Mexico — Mexican federal officers have abandoned a blockade they formed on a bridge to prevent a caravan of thousands of Central American migrants from advancing.

The officers ended a standoff after representatives from Mexico’s National Human Rights Commission told police that a rural stretch of highway without shade, toilets or water was no place to hold negotiations.

The migrants, keen to travel farther before the sun blazed at full midday strength, cheered as they made their way forward on foot. Police boarded buses and headed down the highway.

Officials originally said they would reopen the highway and only wanted an opportunity to explain Mexican President Enrique Pena Nieto’s offer of shelter, medical attention, schooling and jobs to Central Americans who agree to stay in southern Mexico.

Migrants in the city of Arriaga rejected the plan Friday night, but said they may be willing to discuss it again once they reach Mexico City.

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