Donald Trump: US planning ‘tent cities’ for migrants

02 November, 2018, 09:42 | Author: Charlene Valdez
  • Migrant caravan takes a break in southern Mexico

The Pentagon could send thousands more troops to the US-Mexico border, a US official said Monday, as President Donald Trump warned a caravan of Central American migrants that the military was waiting.

"The president has made it clear that border security is national security", O'Shaughnessy said, as he detailed a much larger deployment that the 800 to 1,000 troops predicted by US officials last week.

A previous migrant caravan this year ended with about 200 people at the border between Tijuana and San Diego in early May, where they turned themselves over to authorities on the USA side and applied for asylum.

The first group passed through the spot via the river - wading or on rafts - and was advancing through southern Mexico.

General of the USA air force on meet the press said that "to the end of the week referred to the military contingent will be placed in the South-Western sector of our border, and this is only the beginning of large-scale operations".

U.S. Custom and Border Protection agents take part in drills at crossing gates. Image Reuters
U.S. Custom and Border Protection agents take part in drills at crossing gates. Image Reuters

But Mexican officials seem intent only on seeing the caravan melt away as it travels toward the U.S. border.

Reports say several thousand Honduran migrants moved last week through Guatemala, and some were trying to cross to Mexico local media said.

"We're gonna have tents, they're gonna be very nice, and they're going to wait, and if they don't get asylum they get out".

The Wall Street Journal was the first to report that the planned deployment, first announced late last week, was likely to be much larger than the preliminary figures of 800 to 1,000 troops.

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In April, Trump ordered up to 4,000 National Guardsmen to head to the border as a different migrant caravan wound its way north. But the core group of mostly Honduran migrants has rejected his entreaty and continued heading north toward the USA border.

The president offered no evidence of "gang members" and "very bad people" in the caravan.

The White House has reportedly been considering a more extensive shutdown of the border, including an executive order that would ban asylum applications by those who reach the U.S.

Eight hundred troops already are on their way to southern Texas, O'Shaughnessy said, and their numbers will top 5,200 by week's end.

"These migrants need water, diapers and basic necessities - not an army division", Shaw Drake, policy counsel for the ACLU's Border Rights Center in El Paso, said in a statement.

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Trump tweeted: "This is an invasion of our Country and our Military is waiting for you!"

The US President said that those illegal immigrants who enter the United States and request for asylum will not be released as long as their cases will not be considered by the immigration court.

The U.S. military has already begun delivering jersey barriers to the southern border in conjunction with the deployment plans.

The U.S. military still had no firm idea of what the operation would cost, he added.

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