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150 border patrol agents arrive to deal with spike in apprehensions

November 14, 2016

EDIBURG — U.S. Border Patrol Sector Chief Manuel Padilla said they are adding 150 more agents to address the end-of-the-calendar-year spike in illegal crossings they have been seeing across the Rio Grande Valley.

The agents from Tucson, San Diego and Del Rio Sectors will be screening, classifying and helping to process the record number of family units and unaccompanied minors coming across the Rio Grande.

Most of these illegal crossers are migrating from Central America’s Northern Triangle, which includes El Salvador, Guatemala and Honduras, and are seeking asylum, according to a statement last month from Secretary of Homeland Security Jeh Johnson.

“Border security alone cannot overcome the powerful push factors of poverty and violence that exist in Central America,” Johnson stated. “Walls alone cannot prevent illegal migration. Ultimately, the solution is long-term investment in Central America to address the underlying push factors in the region.”

Chief Padilla said he could not attribute a rise in apprehensions at the southern border to the recent presidential election because they had a similar increase at the end of 2015 or the beginning of their previous fiscal year (Oct. 2015 – Sept. 2016), according to border patrol spokeswoman Marlene Castro.

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