The first wave of a "Trans-Gay Caravan" from Latin America arrived at the U.S.-Mexico border this week, where 16 gays and transsexuals asked for asylum and immediate freedom to go anywhere inside the United States.

The publication Departamento 19 reported on the "First Trans-Gay Caravan" of Latin American refugees.

According to a Mexican report on their request to Immigration and Customs Enforcement officials at an Arizona crossing, they were to be interviewed but not immediately released.

The group, according to the report, are part of a bigger group seeking to escape harassment in Guatemala, El Salvador, Mexico and Nicaragua. They also demand to be freed in the United States after processing out of fear they will be harassed in ICE holding facilities on the border.

They had sought protection in Mexico, but were refused,

"Many people do not understand how difficult it is to be transsexual or homosexual in Central American countries, often harassment, rejection and violence begins at the hands of members of their own families," a representative for the group, Nakay Flotte, told the publication Departamento 19.

Paul Bedard, the Washington Examiner's "Washington Secrets" columnist, can be contacted at