Breaking News
More () »

Viral 2018 photo showing thousands of migrants resurfaces with claims about Title 42’s end

A photo that shows thousands of migrants crossing a bridge is being shared out of context ahead of the end of Title 42. It was taken in southern Mexico in 2018.
Credit: VERIFY
This photo, taken by photographer Guillermo Arias, is being shared with claims about the border and Title 42's expiration.

Title 42, a pandemic-era policy that suspended migrants’ rights to asylum in the U.S. as a health precaution, expires on May 11. 

Ahead of that expiration, videos and photos have gone viral, along with speculation there will be an “invasion” at the U.S.-Mexico border. 

One photo, shared a number of times on Twitter with millions of views, shows thousands of people in transit on a bridge. 

One tweet with the picture says: “This is an invasion. Send in the military and treat this like the invasion that it is. Secure the border NOW!”

People have commented on posts with the photo wondering if the photo shows the current situation at the U.S.-Mexico border. 


Does this viral photo show migrants approaching the U.S. border in May 2023?



This is false.

No, this photo doesn’t show migrants approaching the U.S. border in May 2023. The picture was taken in 2018 – and shows a caravan of Honduran migrants in southern Mexico. 


The photo that has gone viral is real and it does show migrants traveling to the U.S. – but it has nothing to do with the May 11 expiration of Title 42.

It was actually taken in October 2018 by photographer Guillermo Arias on the outskirts of Arriaga, Chiapas, in southern Mexico. 

VERIFY was able to find the original photo, published by several news outlets, using RevEye, a reverse image search tool. 

Arias confirmed he took the photo and its location in an email to VERIFY. He also posted it multiple times on his Instagram page in 2018.

Using Google Maps Street View tool, VERIFY also confirmed the photo was taken in Arriaga. The same bridge with the yellow railing and the mountain and power lines seen in the photo can be seen via Google Maps.

So, we can VERIFY this photo doesn’t show the current situation at the southern border. 

The Department of Homeland Security says they do expect an increase of asylum seekers once Title 42 ends. On May 2, DHS announced additional personnel would be sent to the border to offer additional assistance for 90 days after Title 42 expires.

Do you have questions about Title 42 and what the expiration date means? Email us at questions@verifythis.com or message on social media @verifythis. 

The VERIFY team works to separate fact from fiction so that you can understand what is true and false. Please consider subscribing to our daily newsletter, text alerts and our YouTube channel. You can also follow us on Snapchat, Twitter, Instagram, Facebook and TikTok. Learn More »

Follow Us

Want something VERIFIED?

Text: 202-410-8808

Before You Leave, Check This Out