The Trump administration is expanding a program designed to return migrants to Mexico while they await asylum proceedings, according to reports.
Migrant Protection Protocols (MPP), otherwise referred to as ‘Remain-In-Mexico,’ will be implemented at additional hotspots along the southern border, Department of Homeland Security (DHS) officials have revealed.
The program will be rolled in the Tucson and Del Rio sectors, which have seen an increase in illegal crossings and human trafficking after other sectors, such as Laredo and El Paso, put the protocols in place.
“Officials estimate DHS will send at least one busload each day from U.S. Customs and Border Protection’s Tucson sector to the Texas border city of El Paso, according to the officials, who spoke on the condition of anonymity to discuss the internal plans,” the Washington Post reports.
“Migrants will have interviews to determine if they would be at risk in Mexico, and if not, will be sent to Ciudad Juárez to await their U.S. immigration court hearings.”
Additionally, the Del Rio sector will see the program implemented in similar fashion.
“We’re strengthening our MPP program in Tucson sector and Del Rio sector because what we’ve seen as we’ve tracked these flows is they’re going in these sectors where MPP is maybe not as strong as it could be,” Acting DHS Secretary Chad Wolf told Fox News.
“So we’re continuing to reassess that and putting in and strengthening those measures, and we’ll see them move elsewhere but that’s part of what Border Patrol does, what CBP does and what DHS does.”
Officials credit MPP, along with increased cooperation by the Mexico government, with a massive drop in border crossings since the crisis reached a crescendo in May.
Overall border apprehensions are reportedly down some 70 percent since May, along with an 88 percent decrease in family crossings.
Facebook has blocked a post about the Democratic endorsement of a fence on the Mexican border, citing an independent fact-check. That fact-check shows the post contains no factual errors.
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