MCALLEN, Texas – The protest calling for shutting down various ports of entry across the Texas-Mexico border was called off just hours before it was set to begin. While the group claimed that the cancellation was made due to cartel threats, it remains unclear if lack of protesters played a role.
On Saturday morning, local and state authorities stood watch outside of various international bridges ready to react for any sort of contingency that came up. However, traffic flowed normally from both sides of the border.
Those crossing from the border city of Reynosa into Mission through the Anzalduas International Bridge were welcomed by several police vehicles, tow trucks and armed officers on standby. The group that had called for shutting down the border had issued out a list of the bridges they intended to close and Anzalduas wasn’t one of them. However, Hidalgo County officials told Breitbart Texas that they couldn’t take a chance and had to be ready to respond for any contingency.
In a statement to Breitbart News, the event’s organizer Stasyi Barth said that the cancellation came after cartel threats.
She said, “Cartel threatening mass blood shed. One of the guys in Texas was followed into a Walmart, on the freeway, then approached at his hotel. At the same time, I got a bunch of requests to join the [Facebook] page from Sonora Mexico. I grabbed as many as I could, but realized it was getting out of control fast and I didn’t want them to see who the attendees were. This is after it was requested that we avoid certain areas, because of the recent border threats, unrelated to us. The cartel has people at every port listed..waiting for us, so I was told.”
In an email to the protesters and on social media, Barth apologized for canceling at the last minute and warned that those in attendance not only put themselves at danger but also the law enforcement personnel at the ports of entry.
“Risking anyone’s life is not worth it,” she wrote.
While the protest calling for the shut-down of the bridges had a big following on social media, it remains unclear if there were any protesters actually willing to shut down the bridge. Around the various bridges and rallying points, Breitbart Texas reporters didn’t see any individuals that may have been preparing for a protest.
Follow Ildefonso Ortiz on Twitter @ildefonsoortiz.