Hundreds of migrants from Central America crossed the Suchiate river trying to enter southern Mexico Monday in a new test of U.S. President Donald Trump's Central America strategy to keep them away from the U.S. border. The Suchiate river separates Guatemala from Mexico. 

The migrants moved off a border bridge and to the river after Mexican officials told them they would not be granted passage through the country. Reports said there was shouting and even fireworks as the migrants demanded they be allowed to move freely through Mexico to reach the United States. 

Mexico Central America Migrants
Mexican National Guards stand on the bank of the Suchiate River where Central American migrants are crossing from Guatemala, near Ciudad Hidalgo, Mexico, Monday, Jan. 20, 2020. (AP Photo/Marco Ugarte)
AP

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The Associated Press reported that guardsmen with riot shields had rocks thrown at them by the migrants as they tried to head off the groups to stop them from entering Mexico. Immigration agents were quoted as telling the migrants, “you have two options: you go back to Guatemalan territory or you come with us."

Reuters reported that local television aired images of migrants throwing rocks at the Mexican National Guardsmen who were assembled on the border.

In recent months Mexico has stepped up efforts to prevent migrants from reaching the U.S. under threat of trade and other sanctions from President Donald Trump.