Surge in Number of Illegal Migrants at Southwest Border Reported

A report released by U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) indicates that the number of illegal immigrants attempting to cross the U.S.-Mexico border in November represented a significant increase over previous months. This recent surge in illegal border crossings has led to a record number of apprehensions as well, with the apprehension of undocumented migrants reaching levels comparative to that of the 2014 migration crisis.

In November, there were a total of 47,214 illegal migrants apprehended at the southwest border, nearly 7,500 of which were children unaccompanied by an adult. Collectively, between October and November, border patrol agents apprehended more than 93,000 illegal migrants, which made the total number of apprehensions during that two-month period equivalent to one-third of all apprehensions which occurred in 2015.

In total, the number of Unaccompanied Alien Children (UAC) apprehended at the southwest border by agents increased by 106% between 2015 and 2016, with the majority of apprehensions occurring in the Rio Grande region. The total number of family unit apprehensions at the southwest border increased by 173% between 2015 and 2016, the majority of which were still in the Rio Grande region.

The CBP report reveals that the greatest influx of migrants has come from the Central American countries of El Salvador, Honduras, and Guatemala, accounting for more than 70,000 of all migrant apprehensions in 2016. In response, the U.S. Customs and Border Protection has had to deploy an additional 150 border patrol agents to the Rio Grande Valley in an attempt to deter this recent surge in migrant crossings.

In an effort to circumvent any looming humanitarian crisis from becoming a reality, the U.S. Customs and Border Protection has also established two temporary holding facilities. The facilities are located in Tornillo and Donna, Texas, and are capable of accommodating 500 migrants each.