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Philadelphia Cancels Cinco de Mayo Festivities

  • VOA News

FILE - Marchers in Philadelphia's El Carnaval de Puebla en Filadelfia don costumes depicting the Mexican army that prevailed over the French and Turkish forces during the 1862 Battle of Puebla, commonly known as Cinco de Mayo.

The eastern U.S. city of Philadelphia has canceled this year's celebration of Cinco de Mayo, an event that attracts as many as 15,000 people.

Edgar Ramirez, one of the event's organizers, said the unanimous decision by the planners was "sad," but it was the "responsible" thing to do because of "the severe conditions affecting the immigrant community."

Ramirez said the organizers were afraid federal immigration officers would stage a raid on the annual festival in Philadelphia — the country's fifth-largest city.

U.S. President Donald Trump has called for Immigration and Customs Enforcement officers to step up the arrests and deportations of people living illegally in the U.S.

Cinco de Mayo — or the Fifth of May — commemorates the Mexican army's 1862 victory over France at the Battle of Puebla during the Franco-Mexican War. In the United States, Cinco de Mayo has evolved into a celebration of Mexican culture and heritage, particularly in areas with large Mexican-American populations.

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