Arrests of migrants at the U.S.-Mexico border fell nearly 56% in the 90-day period from June through September. This follows the 13-month high in May when when U.S. border agents arrested nearly 133,000 aliens. This news came from a White House press briefing by Mark Morgan, the acting head of U.S. Customs and Border Protection. Morgan praised President Trump’s resolve to stem the tide of illegal immigration through the U.S.-Mexico border and increased co-operation from the U.S.’ southern neighbors:
“Why do we see in 90 days a 56% reduction?” Morgan asked, before providing an answer to his own question. “The president has made it very clear that he’s going to use every tool available to him and this administration to address this unprecedented crisis.”
Morgan lauded Mexico’s decision to expand its immigration enforcement efforts and to deploy newly formed National Guard units to the country’s southern border with Guatemala in light of its agreement with the U.S. in early June. This year, Mexican immigration officials have apprehended about 134,000 migrants so far, compared to 83,000 in all of last year, Morgan said.
Mexico’s new-found zeal to aid the U.S. in limiting unauthorized borders crossings came under threat. At the height of this summer’s border crisis, President Trump threatened to impose tariffs on Mexico’s exports to the U.S. Last year, Mexico sold $372 billion dollars worth of goods to the United States, or roughly 80% of Mexico’s total exports. Import levies would harm Mexico as much as the taxes have hurt China. Still, threats aren’t enough. The U.S. needs to strike strong and binding agreements with its neighbors to the south to seek a permanent solution to the border crisis.