Immigrants are flooding the U.S.-Mexico border to beat the rush before the pandemic-era Title 42 policy instituted by the Trump administration ends next week.
Title 42 allows for the rapid deportation of many illegal immigrants from the border, even asylum-seekers. But with the order set to end Dec. 20, those entering the country illegally will have to wait longer to be processed, creating an even bigger strain on a U.S. Customs and Border Protection stretched thin from thousands of daily crossings.
"They are trying to cross now due to T42 ending soon, which is going to make the process of getting released longer," a border patrol official told the Washington Examiner on Monday. "The system that's in place won't be able to accommodate thousands of people on a daily basis."
Documents from the Border Patrol showed nearly 4,500 immigrants were in custody Saturday at the crossing in El Paso, Texas, sector, the Examiner reported. Another 750 who crossed as one group were waiting outdoors because facilities were above capacity.
The CBP is sending more border agents to El Paso and reassigning officers from customs duties to deal with the region's migrant spike, BorderPatrol.com reported Monday, adding that 1,500 to 2,100 migrants have walked to the Mexican banks of the Rio Grande in Juarez since late Saturday night and made their way across to El Paso, where they have turned themselves over to border agents in hopes of getting asylum in the U.S.
“El Paso Sector on the Texas border with Mexico has seen an increase in encounters. To process individuals as safely and expeditiously as possible, U.S. Border Patrol agents from Big Bend and CBP officers from the El Paso Field Office are assisting with processing," the CBP said Monday morning, according to BorderPatrol.com.
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