Monday, 19 November, 2018

MEXICO BORDER: Trump deploys 5,200 soldiers over migrant influx

Migrant caravan takes a break in southern Mexico Migrants and police clash, one killed
Jay Anderson | 02 November, 2018, 09:44

The Pentagon said it's sending 5,200 troops to the Southwest border in an extraordinary military operation. Those migrants clashed with Mexican authorities determined not to let the caravan grow or be repeated.The new group, whose members called themselves a second caravan, gathered on the global bridge leading from Tecun Uman to Mexico.

The Customs and Border Patrol is pushing a surge in personnel in response to the caravan of Central American immigrants, which was still hundreds of miles from the US border, three administration officials said.

The announcement comes just days after President Trump declared the migrant caravan making its way to the USA a "National Emergency".

Trump railed against illegal immigration to win the 2016 presidential election and has seized on the caravan of Central American migrants at campaign rallies in the run-up to next week's vote.

United States officials last week said about 800 active-duty troops would be sent to provide assistance - mainly in the form of logistical support - to border guards working along the frontier. The trip could be twice as long if the migrants head for the Tijuana-San Diego frontier, as another caravan did earlier this year.

President Donald Trump warned the "caravan of migrants" approaching the US-Mexico border Monday that the US military will be waiting for them when they arrive. The National Guard is often used by states to help with border security. "If you want to wait, they don't usually get asylum".

Perhaps Trump doesn't understand that it is legal for anyone on USA soil, even if they arrived without documentation or authorization, to claim asylum and start a legal process that can end with them being allowed to stay.

The White House is also weighing additional border security measures, including blocking those traveling in the caravan from seeking legal asylum and keeping them from entering the U.S.




"By the end of the week, we will deploy over 5,200 soldiers to the southwest border", Air Force General Terrence O'Shaughnessy, head of the U.S. military's Northern Command, told reporters.

"We're going to put tents up all over the place", told Fox News Channel's Laura Ingraham.

Initial deployments for the operation include soldiers from Fort Campbell and Fort Knox in Kentucky, Fort Hood in Texas and Fort Riley in Kansas, according to a Pentagon document obtained by The Washington Post.

Warning: Donald Trump has tweeted his warnings about the caravans.

Customs and Border Protection is pushing a surge in personnel in response to the caravan of Central American immigrants, which is still hundreds of miles from the U.S. border.

Trump denied his focus on the caravan is meant to help Republicans in next week's midterms, saying, "This has nothing to do with elections". More than 1,500 of the original group have applied for asylum in Mexico.

Migrants are entitled under both USA and worldwide law to apply for asylum.

The U.S. military still had no firm idea of what the operation would cost, he added.

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