The rising share of global migrants arriving at the southern U.S. border has prompted pro-migration advocates to fund a mosque in Tijuana, Mexico.
The San Diego Union-Tribune reported on June 16:
The two-story shelter is in Tijuana’s Zona Norte close to the U.S.-Mexico border. The 8,000-square-foot facility has the capacity to serve up to 150 people arriving at the border seeking asylum. Some might stay in Mexico, but most are looking to enter the United States. It currently houses 30 people.
The investment was almost half a million dollars, raised from community donations, [Sonia] García said. The shelter is home to migrants from Kenya, Ghana, Russia and Afghanistan, among others.
“We are safe here,” said Ilyas Salarzai, 22, from Afghanistan. “The Latina Muslim Foundation has been very good.” Salarzai is currently waiting for certain documents as part of his immigration process.
The mosque will have plenty of customers. In May, more than 2,000 single adult migrants from Muslim-majority countries were registered at the U.s. border with Mexico.
Almost half the migrants who arrived at the border in May were from countries that had sent few migrants until President Joe Biden pushed the door open in January 2021. “Unlike every one of his predecessors, Biden isn’t attempting to deter illegal entrants — he is instead inviting asylum applications from any foreign national who can make it here,” Mark Krikorian, the director of the Center for Immigration Studies, tweeted on June 17.