Just as NAFTA talks appear to be entering their final stage United States President Donald Trump threw out a suggestion on Twitter this morning that an agreement might be conditional on immigration policy.
"Our gaze is now northward, where many of us will go to request asylum in the United States because we can not go back to our countries and we can not live safely in Mexico", the caravan's organizers said in a statement. Trump added the country could not accept "what is happening" and that his administration would explore any option available, including the ongoing NAFTA negotiations, to ensure the security of America's southern border.
President Trump began his week with a Twitter blast at Mexico over immigration, saying the country "must stop people from going through Mexico and into the U.S." and threatening to "make this a condition of the new NAFTA Agreement".
The social media announcement came more than a week after the USA leader said talks to revamp the North American Free Trade Agreement with Mexico and Canada were "coming along great", although he said there was no deadline for a new deal to be completed.
Trump made similar comments linking the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) and immigration when a "caravan" of migrants from Central America moved through Mexico earlier this month.
Speaking in Germany, Nieto said differences between the parties could be overcome to revamp the 24-year-old accord, which underpins some $1.2 trillion in annual trilateral trade.
Even so, differences still remain on US demands to change dispute resolution mechanisms, and other issues.
Mexico, which has very tough immigration laws, should prevent people from crossing the border and entering the United States.
But the remainder - organizers claim some 600 are still part of the caravan - say they're determined to make the U.S.
"If members of the "caravan" enter the country illegally, they will be referred for prosecution for illegal entry in accordance with existing law", Homeland Security Secretary Kirstjen M. Nielsen said in a statement on Monday.
"Trump has railed against the caravan, but migrants have the right to request asylum in the USA and should not be turned away buy border officials unless they fail to pass initial security screenings", the group said.