More than 1,000 migrants crossed the South Texas border on Sunday evening in a dire indication of the chaos to come when Title 42 ends in just nine days.
The group from Cuba, Venezuela and Nicaragua – perhaps the largest in history – crossed the Rio Grande to El Paso, where local authorities release hundreds of migrants onto the streets and border officials preparing for an increase in crossings.
Footage shows the migrants wading through water with belongings, then queuing on the river bank to be processed by Customs and Border Protection (CBP) officers.
Title 42, the COVID policy of deporting migrants when they reach the border, is set to end on December 21 – just four days before Christmas.
Overstretched border guards fear thousands of people could enter the United States from Central America every day and be overwhelmed by the influx.
Mexican authorities appear to have aided the illegal crossings, with footage of police escorting nearly 20 buses full of migrants to Ciudad Juarez, Mexico, which is directly across the border from El Paso.
As pandemic-era politics winds down just before Christmas, House Republicans warn in a letter obtained by DailyMail.com that the Biden administration’s use of air marshals to help along the border could put “the lives and safety of airline passengers at risk”. vacations.
A group of 1,000 migrants, perhaps the largest group to date, crossed the Rio Grande River overnight to surrender to US Border Patrol agents in El Paso, Texas.
The migrants who crossed on Sunday evening are mostly from Cuba, Venezuela and Nicaragua. Pictured: A migrant family from Nicaragua is seen before crossing the river to turn into the US Border Patrol
The massive caravan comes just nine days before the expiration of Title 42, which allowed the immediate deportation of asylum seekers during the COVID-19 pandemic, and could lead to holiday chaos on the southern border
Title 42 helped ease the migration crisis at the southern border, as immigration officials were able to immediately deport asylum seekers amid the public health emergency.
President Joe Biden attempted to end the policy in May, but received a slew of backlash from Republicans who claimed it was wrong to end a policy while the United States was still under emergency health orders.
Title 42 was first enacted under former President Donald Trump.
El Paso reports that after Sunday night’s 1,000 crossings, Border Patrol now has more than 5,000 illegal immigrants in custody and has released hundreds onto the streets of American cities.
As Title 42 ends just before Christmas, House Republicans are also warning that the Biden administration’s use of air marshals to help along the border could put “the lives and safety of passengers airlines in danger” during the holidays.
GOP Rep. Mike Carey of Ohio leads a request for additional information from Department of Homeland Security (DHS) Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas, whose department oversees both Customs and Border Patrol. (CBP) as well as the Transportation Security Agency (TSA) – which operates the Federal Air Marshal Service.
Ahead of the weekend mass migration, Mexican police escorted nearly 20 busloads of migrants through Ciudad Juarez, Mexico, before the migrants then crossed the river and illegally crossed into El Paso, according to Fox News.
The migrants who crossed over the weekend were kidnapped by organized crime groups in Mexico and released days later by the Mexican army to cross the river to the United States.
Carey’s letter, first obtained by DailyMail.com on Monday and co-signed by six other GOP members of Congress, lists a series of questions for Mayorkas about the plan, including “an estimate of the cost” of sending air marshals at the border, what they are working on and whether a public safety assessment has been done before taking action.
“As we enter one of the busiest travel times of the year, it is imperative that every Federal Air Marshal does his or her actual job rather than helping solve a problem your administration has created. and continues to ignore,” the lawmakers said.
Thousands of Border Patrol agents are preparing for a total collapse of the US immigration system with the end of Title 42.
“When Title 42 ends, we’ll see an already broken immigration system become completely inundated across the board,” a border agent told the Washington Examiner.
Migrants seeking asylum stand near the border wall after crossing the Rio Bravo River to surrender to US authorities on Sunday, December 11
The first month of fiscal year 2023 showed more than 230,000 encounters with CBP, the third highest month in recent history, all of which occurred under President Joe Biden
For the fiscal year ending September 30, there were 2,378,944 encounters – the highest level ever recorded by the department
For years during the COVID-19 pandemic, CBP was able to deport migrants crossing the southern border into Mexico without first processing them through the US immigration system.
The end of Title 42 comes as figures show illegal immigration encounters on the southern border reached one of the highest numbers on record in October, ranking third after April and May of this year.
The start of fiscal year 2023 came with CBP reporting encounters with 230,678 migrants at the southern border. Border Patrol workers warn the crisis will only get worse once Biden completes Title 42 next month.
In fiscal year 2022, CBP encountered more than 2.3 million migrants crossing the southern border – a massive record.
Migrants, mostly from the northern triangle country of Nicaragua, formed a caravan to reach El Paso, Texas, after being freed by the Mexican military following a kidnapping in Durango, Mexico, by organized crime .