Explosive Coverage of Anti-Caravan Protesters on Univision

Popular protests in Tijuana, Mexico, against the arrival of thousands of Central American asylum seekers have headlined the national evening news on Univision in recent days. For a network whose chief anchor, Jorge Ramos, has been a champion of the caravans and an outspoken opponent of President Trump, the coverage of the protests has been especially revealing.

When the protests in Tijuana first erupted last weekend, anchor Aranxta Loizaga opened the newscast with the protesters’ shouts of “No to the invasion” and a robust report on the protesters' anti-caravan arguments.

ARANTXA LOIZAGA, NEWS ANCHOR, UNIVISION: Shouting “No to the invasion” Tijuanans demand the exit of the thousands of Central Americans disturbing their city, waiting to request asylum in the United States.

[…]

FIDEL GONZALEZ, ANTI-CARAVAN PROTESTER: That it’s not a legal or orderly migration, and we are dissatisfied with the way they entered and the problems they have caused our neighbors in this city.

JORGE FREGOSO, CORRESPONDENT, UNIVISION: Their main fear is that violence increases with the presence of these groups of asylum seekers.

ROBERTO MALACARA, ANTI-CARAVAN PROTESTER: Insecurity. We have a lot of insecurity in the city domestically. Now imagine if many of them come bad. Not all, but some bad ones, to hurt us. To make gangs.

Though correspondent Jorge Fregoso attempted to downplay the size of the crowd of some 300 anti-caravan protesters, he did give them an opportunity to make their most compelling case against the influx and its negative effects upon the Mexican border city. The presence of pro-Trump activist Paloma Zúñiga was featured in the report.

Anchor Aranxta Loizaga also noted that many residents of the city embrace the stance of Tijuana’s Mayor, Juan Manuel Gastélum, who refused to call the caravaners “migrants” and instead branded them as a bunch of “vagrants and marihuaneros.”

Below is the complete transcript of the above-referenced segment, as aired during the November 18, 2018 edition of Noticiero Univisión.

ARANTXA LOIZAGA, NEWS ANCHOR, UNIVISION: Shouting “No to the invasion” Tijuanans demand the exit of the thousands of Central Americans disturbing their city, waiting to request asylum in the United States

ARANTXA LOIZAGA: The situation in the border city of Tijuana deteriorates as the hours go by, due to the arrival of more than 3,000 migrants from the caravan of Central Americans, only a third of those expected to reach that location. Residents of that city echoed the harsh criticism of its mayor, who branded the foreigners as vagrants and marihuaneros, and shouting several slogans, among them “No to the invasion” the Tijuana residents demand that they leave their city. We begin our special coverage with my colleague, Patricia Janiot.

PATRICIA JANIOT, NEWS ANCHOR, UNIVISION: Well, in the middle of those demonstrations there were hundreds of people and there were U.S. citizens, Arantxa, and some supporters of Donald Trump. They caused disturbances. But perhaps the moment of greatest tension was when they tried to enter a shelter sponsored by the government where these Central American migrants are staying. Let's see Jorge Fregoso's report that tells us what happened.

JORGE FREGOSO, CORRESPONDENT, UNIVSION: They met to protest against the Central American members of the migrant caravan, but the convocation was not as crowded as they expected. The majority are residents of Tijuana who reject the migrants being in this city. They demand that they be deported, or that they be regularized, and call them invaders for the way in which they entered the country.

FIDEL GONZALEZ, ANTI-CARAVAN PROTESTER: That it’s not a legal or orderly migration, and we are dissatisfied with the way they entered and the problems they have caused our neighbors in this city.

JORGE FREGOSO: Their main fear is that violence increases with the presence of these groups of asylum seekers.

ROBERTO MALACARA, ANTI-CARAVAN PROTESTER: Insecurity. We have a lot of insecurity in the city, domestically. Now imagine if many of them come bad, not all, but some bad ones, to hurt us. To make gangs.

JORGE FREGOSO: Among the protesters were also residents of the United States, in particular a woman who openly said she supports the policies of Donald Trump.

PALOMA ZUNIGA, ANTI-CARAVAN PROTESTER: Yes, I support Donald Trump. Why?  Because Donald Trump is for his people, because Donald Trump is for his country and for its borders. The same thing we should be doing here in Mexico.

JORGE FREGOSO: Roberto was wearing a hat that identifies the groups that support the President of the United States, Donald Trump.

ROBERTO, ANTI-CARAVAN PROTESTER: The United States has its asylum system and the people who believe that they can just jump over the border and go through all that, that's not right. Like, it's bad for people who are waiting.

JORGE FREGOSO: During the protest there were some altercations among those who support the Central Americans, one block away. A group was demonstrating in favor of the caravaners.

UNIDENTIFIED PRO-CARAVAN: That does not give a right or merit hate speech and the rejection and the racism that we are seeing.

JORGE FREGOSO: Finally the protesters decided to march to the facilities of the shelter. On their way they shouted slogans against the members of the caravan and violently arrived to where the police had them cordoned off. In Tijuana, Jorge Fregoso, Univision.


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