Migrants have camped under a bridge in a remote American city dividing Texas and Mexico – as U.S. border forces attempt to process thousands of asylum claims.
The bridge connects Del Rio in Texas and Ciudad Acuna in Mexico – with low food and water supplies after migrants set up a makeshift camp in squalid conditions.
Del Rio mayor Bruno Lozano said on Thursday that 10,503 migrants were under the bridge and asked for help from the federal government.
In a video posted to social media, Mr Lozano said: “The border patrol is so overwhelmed with the influx of migrants. We have around 2,000 to 3,000 in detention at any given time.
“We have the health threat, yesterday we had a woman who gave birth. We have the threat of COVID-19 and other diseases found in our area due to this vast migration.
“This is something that really needs to be brought to light, we need quick action from the administration. We need quick attention to this. We need a real time response.”
The majority of migrants are from Haiti, which was devastated by a Magnitude 7.2 earthquake in August which has displaced tens of thousands of people and killed more than 1,400 people.
People from Cuba, Venezuela and Nicaragua also made the trip.
Temperatures have reached 37 ° C (99 ° F) in Texas and hundreds of migrants have been seen wading in the Rio Grande River and returning to Mexico to stock up on basic necessities.
This is the latest challenge for the Joe Biden administration, with border arrests approaching peaks in 20 years.
US authorities arrested more than 195,000 migrants at the Mexican border in August, according to government data released Wednesday.
Ernesto, a 31-year-old Haitian migrant, returned to Mexico on Thursday to buy water and food for the fourth time.
He declined to give his last name and said he and his three-year-old daughter were not fed at the camp.
“But now the money is running out,” he added.
The border patrol said in a statement that it was increasing its numbers at Del Rio to facilitate a “safe, humane and orderly process.”
Drinking water, towels and portable toilets have been provided while migrants wait to be transported to the facilities, he added.
Mr. Biden has canceled many immigration measures implemented under President Donald Trump.
But some Democrats have criticized him for not doing more to help migrants, and his opponents say his policies have encouraged illegal immigration.
Del Rio is in Val Verde County and voted for Trump in 2020.
Migrants and Mexican officials said many more are expected in the coming days.
Jeff Jeune, a 27-year-old Haitian, said he and his young family were exhausted, starving and sleeping on the floor.
“My 10-year-old asks, ‘When are we leaving?’ He always asks that, ”said Young.