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Mexico sends 15,000 troops to US border

Mexican troops during a patrol. (BSMFBSMF/Wikimedia Commons)
June 25, 2019

Mexico has sent approximately 15,000 troops to the U.S. border in efforts to control the flow of migrants to the U.S.

“We have a total deployment, between the National Guard and army units, of 14,000, almost 15,000 men in the north of the country,” Mexico’s Secretary of Defense Luis Sandoval said at a joint press conference with Mexico’s President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador, as reported by Agence France Press (AFP) on Monday.

“Given that (undocumented) migration is not a crime but rather an administrative violation, we simply detain them and turn them over to the authorities,” Sandoval added.

Lopez Obrador previously deployed 6,000 troops earlier this month to Mexico’s southern border.

“The policy is a shift from previous practice. The Mexican security forces have long detained undocumented migrants as they travel in the country, but had not typically stopped them from crossing the US border in the past,” AFP noted.

Mexico’s military deployments was condition agreed upon by the nation’s leaders in exchange for avoiding tariffs imposed by the Trump Administration.

President Trump had threatened tariffs after multiple calls on Mexico to block the flow of migrants from Central America, which have been overwhelming the U.S.-Mexico border.

The two nations agreed upon a deal on June 7, which granted Mexico a period of 45 days to demonstrably reduce the flow of migrants.

U.S. border officials apprehended more than 144,000 migrants at the southern border in May alone – an increase of 278 percent compared to May 2018.

Vice President Mike Pence tweeted Tuesday morning, “Mexico is keeping its promise & now sending 15,000 troops to border to help with crisis. Meanwhile Dems won’t fund beds for migrant children. Mexico continues to do more than Congressional Dems to secure our border, and its time for them to STEP UP!”

Over the weekend, Pence credited Mexico for doing “more to secure our border in 10 days than Democrats in Congress have in 10 YEARS.”

In April, Mexico claimed to have deported more than 15,000 U.S.-bound migrants that month alone, but noted but thousands more migrants were on the way.

They also estimated 300,000 migrants enter Mexico each year, some coming from as far away as India.