US President Donald Trump on Monday (Tuesday NZ Time) vowed to cut off or "substantially" reduce aid to three Latin American nations, voicing fresh frustration as a growing caravan of migrants that originated in Honduras continued to make its way toward the US-Mexico border.
He went on to tweet that the Mexican federal police, who have been monitoring the caravan since the crowds breached a fence Friday at the Mexico-Guatemalan border and pushed past border patrol agents, have been unable to stop the sea of humanity. Criminals and unknown Middle Easterners are mixed in.
"Every time you see a Caravan, or people illegally coming, or attempting to come, into our Country illegally, think of and blame the Democrats for not giving us the votes to change our pathetic Immigration Laws", the president said.
The Monday morning tweets marked the latest escalation by the president, who is seeking to re-inject immigration politics into the national conversation in the closing weeks of the midterm elections.
President Trump, who's been unable to win changes to US laws, has pressured Honduras - the source of most of this caravan's members - as well as Guatemala and Mexico, which the caravan must travel through to reach the USA, to do more.
Despite Mexican efforts to stop them at the Guatemala-Mexico border, about 5,000 Central American migrants resumed their advance toward the US border Sunday in southern Mexico.
Mexico's president-elect Andrés Manuel López Obrador, who takes office December 1, said the United States should welcome all migrants.
The migrants have defied threats by Mr Trump that he will close the US-Mexico border if the caravan advances, as well as warnings from the Mexican government that they risk deportation if they can not justify seeking asylum in Mexico.
The large group have been gathering numbers as they travel across Central America.
In interviews along the journey, migrants have said they are fleeing widespread violence, poverty and corruption in Honduras.
Jose Anibal Rivera, 52, an unemployed security guard from San Pedro Sula, crossed into Mexico by raft Sunday and walked up to Tapachula from Ciudad Hidalgo to join the caravan.
Trump offered no evidence that anyone from the Middle East is with the Central American migrants.
With the migrants now well into Mexico, Trump blasted the governments of Honduras, El Salvador, and Guatemala for allowing the caravan to get this far in the first place.