(WASHINGTON) The number of immigrants intercepted by US authorities at the southern border decreased by 50% after the lifting of a measure adopted during the pandemic to shut down the country, the Secretary of Homeland Security said Sunday.
“Over the past two days, the US border guards have seen a 50% decrease in arrivals compared to the beginning of the week,” Alejandro Mayorcas told CNN.
According to him, some 6,300 migrants illegally crossed the border with Mexico on Friday and 4,200 on Saturday, far fewer than the tens of thousands registered daily earlier in the week.
“It’s still early days, we’re only on the third day” since the “Title 42” raise, he added, however, avoiding any victory.
That system, which expired at 11:59 p.m. Thursday Washington time, made it possible to immediately turn back immigrants without visas, including asylum seekers, in the name of a health emergency.
To avert the influx of migrants, Democratic President Joe Biden’s government has deployed thousands of police and military personnel to the roughly 3,200 km that separates the United States and Mexico, and has adopted new restrictions on the right to asylum.
Before presenting themselves at the border, asylum seekers, with the exception of unaccompanied minors, must now have been given an appointment on an application-focused telephone application, “CBP One,” or have been denied asylum in one of the transited countries.
Otherwise, their application is presumed to be illegitimate and they may be subject to expedited deportation proceedings, which bars them from entering US territory for five years.
“We are executing our plan exactly as planned,” Alejandro Mayorkas told ABC. We have already expelled thousands of immigrants: if they try to return, they will face a five-year ban and possible criminal prosecution.”
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