Monday, 10 Dec 2018
World

Monthly border arrests reach new high for Trump presidency


Migrants traveling with children walk on a hill to a US border police officer waiting inside San Ysidro, California, after crossing Monday's border wall in Tijuana, Mexico. (Rebecca Blackwell / AP)

The number of people stopped or banned from entering the Mexican border reached a new high for the Trump presidency in November, according to Homeland Security figures released Thursday, as arrests of minors and relatives with children continued to increase.

During a month, as the President's attention was drawn to groups of caravans of Central American migrants flocking to the Mexican border town of Tijuana, large groups of parents with children entered southern Arizona and the Rio Grande Valley, in southern Texas, with far fewer fanfares.

US Customs and Border Protection arrested 25,172 members of "family units" in November, the highest number ever recorded, as well as 5,283 "unaccompanied minors". Together, these two groups accounted for nearly 60% of all arrests at the border in November.

Overall, CBP stopped or refused the entry of 62,456 cross-border commuters in November, compared with 60,772 in October.

Family groups – mainly from Guatemala – usually cross the border and surrender to US authorities, while expressing fear of returning home, which prevents their immediate expulsion.

The limits imposed by the courts on the government's ability to detain children in immigration jails and the cruel lack of detention facilities mean that most asylum seekers arriving with children are treated and quickly released, usually with a GPS tracking device and a date of hearing with an immigration judge. far in the future.

Trump is taking on some helpers, most notably Homeland Security Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen earlier this year when border arrests have surged, but in recent months his reactions to data related to the state of the United States. law enforcement were less ardent.

In a statement, DHS spokeswoman Katie Waldman blamed the increase on the 9th circuit Court of Appeals judges, who repeatedly blocked the Trump administration's efforts to reform the immigration policies by executive measures.

"The November 2018 border numbers are the predictable result of a broken immigration system – including erroneous court rulings – that usurps the will of the American people who repeatedly asked for secure borders," Waldman said.

"The bad decisions of the Ninth Circuit are directly responsible for the more than 25,000 family units that have violated our national sovereignty and are immune to the consequences of their illegal actions," she said.

An unspecified number of arrests in November were members of caravan groups attempting to cross from Tijuana, where at least 6,000 Central Americans arrived last month with plans to enter the United States.

DHS officials mention the caravans and the recent attempt by some of its members to cross the border to reinforce their arguments for multi-billion dollar financing, while Trump continues to threaten the Democrats with the closure of the government.

"If Congress again refuses to end the well-known and devastating shortcomings and fund the president's wall, it will prolong a long decade of failing duty," Waldman said.

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