Texas officials have sounded the alarm on a significant surge in migrant crossings along the U.S.-Mexico border. Taking action to address the migrant crisis, the Department of Homeland Security deployed 800 new active-duty military personnel to join the 2,500 National Guard members already stationed at the border. This surge also brought heartbreaking tragedies, including the loss of a 3-year-old boy in the Rio Grande.
As tensions rise, Mexican President Andrés Manuel López Obrador has hinted at a potential visit to Washington, D.C. in November to address this mounting migrant crisis.
Influx of migrants
The latest data from U.S. Customs and Border Protection reveal a staggering encounter with over 142,000 migrants at the border in the first half of September, according to Reuters.
Mexican officials have also expressed concerns about temporary border crossing closures affecting trade. Rail freight and cargo processing have ground to a halt this week, with Eagle Pass, Texas, declaring a state of emergency due to the influx of migrants.
Eagle Pass, a city with a population of 28,000, has been inundated with approximately 6,000 migrant arrivals in just two days, as reported by AP. Mayor Rolando Salinas Jr. emphasized the necessity of the emergency declaration, citing the need for additional resources to address the challenges posed by undocumented immigrants.
Tragedy struck the region as well, with the discovery of two bodies in the Rio Grande. One victim was a 3-year-old boy who was traveling with his family. Both bodies were found north of a contentious floating border barrier that has become the epicenter of a legal dispute between President Biden’s administration and Texas Governor Greg Abbott.
While tensions flare on the ground, President López Obrador commended President Biden for offering legal pathways, such as temporary protections for thousands of Venezuelan nationals. However, he emphasized that more comprehensive global plans are urgently needed to address the root causes of this migrant crisis, particularly poverty, which continues to drive people to flee their home countries.
Migrant crisis: A huge challenge
As the situation unfolds, Texas and the United States at large find themselves at a critical juncture, grappling with both a humanitarian crisis and a mounting political and logistical challenge on the southern border.
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