Mexican protesters shut down the border with the United States on Thursday by blocking roadways, fearing American travelers spreading the deadly coronavirus pandemic to their country.
“There are no health screenings by the federal government to deal with this pandemic,” protester Jose Luis Hernandez told USA Today. “We’ve taken this action to call on the Mexican President Andrés Manuel López Obrador to act now.”
The protesters, wearing facemasks, told the BBC that although the border is supposed to be closed to all but “essential” business, travelers from the United States are still being allowed through with no health screening.
It’s an ironic reversal, as the U.S. has cracked down on border security under the Trump administration. But now, flipping that dynamic, the U.S. has more confirmed cases of COVID-19 than anywhere on Earth — whereas Mexico only had 500 as of Thursday, according to the BBC.
The protesters are also angry at Mexican president Andrés Manuel López Obrador, who they say isn’t taking the outbreak seriously.
Public health officials in Mexico are calling for strict measures to limit community transmission, according to USA Today, but López Obrador has refused to tell residents to stay home — a move that could mean the virus will spread regardless of whether the country cracks down on its Northern border.
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