Last month, Border Patrol arrested just 34,000 migrants at the U.S.-Mexico Border, a 75% decline since May. The Trump administration credits the decline to tougher asylum policies and increased cooperation with Mexico and Central American nations.
While it looks like Border Patrol has the situation more in hand than earlier this year, the recent decline just brings the number of arrests back to the average for November over the past decade.
Acting Customs and Border Protection Commissioner Mark Morgan said on Monday that Congress needs to take legislative action to discourage illegal crossings in the long term.
“This is not durable and sustainable. We should not be looking to the government of Mexico and the Northern Triangle countries to solve the loopholes in our current legal framework.”
The Migrant Protection Protocols call for sending migrants waiting for asylum hearings back to Mexico until their hearings. A Customs and Border Protection official said on Monday that roughly 54,000 migrants had been sent to Mexico through the program, a figure revised down from 59,000 last month.
A report released last week by the New York City-based organization Human Rights First found at least 636 publicly reported cases of kidnapping, rape, torture, assault, and other violent attacks against migrants sent to Mexico under the program.