DHS acting chief: Trump’s action with Mexico expected to drop border crossings by 25 percent

(Official White House Photo by Shealah Craighead)

President Trump’s agreement with Mexico to increase its immigration enforcement measures is predicted to have a significant impact at the border.

The number of migrants who were apprehended at the border in June is expected to be up to 25 percent lower than it has been in the preceding months, the acting head of the Department of Homeland Security said Friday.

(Video: YouTube/U.S. Customs and Border Protection)

“It’s become clear that over the past three weeks since the administration reached a new agreement with Mexico that we’ve seen a substantial increase in the number of interdictions on the Mexican southern border,” Acting Secretary Kevin McAleenan told reporters,”and a sincere effort to address the transportation networks coming through Mexico.”

He noted that the U.S. was expecting Mexico to send an increased number of National Guard members to the border while expanding the “Migrant Protection Protocols “which will allow illegal immigrants awaiting immigration proceedings to be returned to Mexico.

“These initiatives are making an impact and we are now anticipating a significant reduction in border crossing numbers from June, as much as 25 percent when compared to the record level in May,” McAleenan said, thanking Mexico for making a “sincere effort” to address the issue.

(Photo By Mani Albrecht – U.S. Customs and Border Protection)

McAleenan’s remarks at Friday’s press conference came one day after the House passed a $4.6 billion spending package to provide emergency funding to deal with the crisis on the southern U.S. border amid increased criticism of border detention facilities.

The acting DHS chief denounced some media reports that were “missing the story” and claiming that children were being held in deplorable conditions at border detention facilities.

“Contrary to the reporting, children in CBP custody at the border are receiving access to key supplies, including toothbrushes, appropriate meals, blankets, showers as soon as they can be provided, and medical screening,” McAleenan said, noting that although he has testified for months about DHS being overwhelmed at the border, lawmakers had done nothing to alleviate the problem.

“This situation should not be acceptable to any of us,” McAleenan said. “It should galvanize action and real debate based on what is actually happening on the border and why. And yet here in Washington, we have collectively failed to act to address the drivers of the crisis.”

(Image: screenshot)

However, he was grateful the bill was passed and that it “substantially addresses” the funding request.

Trump reached an agreement with Mexico earlier this month in an effort to prevent increased U.S. tariffs being imposed on Mexican imports.

Mexico stated that it would take “unprecedented steps to increase enforcement to curb irregular migration, to include the deployment of its National Guard throughout Mexico, giving priority to its southern border,” according to a joint declaration issued by the State Department and Mexico.

U.S. Customs and Border Protection reported that in May, 132,887 people were apprehended between ports of entry on the Southwest Border, up from 99,304 in the month of April and 92,840 in March. A total of 396,579 individuals were apprehended in fiscal year 2018.

Frieda Powers


Latest Articles