Last update: 03 May 2023, 07:27 HST
Washington, United States
Migrants line up after being stopped by U.S. authorities at the U.S.-Mexico border in Ciudad Juárez, Mexico, Sunday, April 30, 2023. (AP Photo/Christian Chávez)
El Paso in Texas has already declared a state of emergency as crowds of people sleep on the streets and some of them have been moved to government-run centers
The US Department of Defense plans to deploy an additional 1,500 troops to the border with Mexico as it expects a wave of migrants when Covid-era restrictions are lifted next week.
The influx of migrants is expected as Title 42, a policy introduced under President Donald Trump that allowed the government to turn back migrants at the border using Covid-19 pandemic measures, will end on May 11.
Although encounters between US border agents and undocumented immigrants have declined this year, incidents have recently increased. According to a CNN report, there are around 7,000 such incidents per day and they are expected to increase significantly next week.
Here’s everything you need to know about the expected influx of migrants:
US troops do not play a law enforcement role
About 1,500 soldiers will be sent to the border, adding to the 2,500 already present to support the border patrol authorities.
The additional troops are meant to act in strictly administrative roles and not to assist in law enforcement. Although some of them may be armed, they will have no direct role in interacting with migrants at the border. The additional staff will also help with data entry and warehouse support.
Biden government’s plan to discourage railroad crossings
The Biden administration has tried to discourage migrants from crossing the border and said those apprehended would not only be turned back, but also potentially barred from returning. On February 21, he announced a new set of restrictions aimed at penalizing people who enter the country illegally.
The United States is working with Colombia and Guatemala to set up regional processing centers to allow migrants to apply before arriving in the United States. Meanwhile, more than 36,000 migrants are already camping along the border in northern Mexico waiting for Title 42 to end, according to reports.
Crowds in Texas
El Paso in Texas has declared a state of emergency as it expects a huge influx at the end of Title 42. In El Paso, crowds of people are already sleeping rough and have been moved to centers run by the government.
Anger in New York
Texas would transport thousands of migrants to cities like New York, Chicago and Washington DC. According to a CNN report, more than 50,000 asylum seekers have arrived in New York since last spring.
New York City Mayor Eric Adams has called on the federal government to stop giving emergency funds to Texas border towns that use the fund to rent buses and ship migrants further north.
Canada and Spain have also agreed to take in some of those cleared by processing centers to emigrate, US officials said.
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