The U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) has announced that arrests of illegal migrants crossing our southern border between ports of entry fell in August by 30 percent over the previous month’s total. In August, 50,693 such migrants were apprehended, compared with 71,999 in July. Both totals were considerably down from the May peak of 132,870.
That’s the good news.
The bad news is the August total was still up by fully 35 percent over last August’s 37,524. So far in this fiscal year, which ends September 30, the total apprehensions (811,016) are up by 145 per cent over those in the comparable period last year.
So the massive influx continues, only at a somewhat slower rate.
To what do we owe this improvement, as imperfect as it is? Officials tend to discount seasonal variances based on weather, which do exist but not to this extent. Instead, most point to diplomatic efforts on the part of the Trump administration with Mexico; the “Northern Triangle” states of Guatemala, El Salvador, and Honduras; Panama and, possibly, as we saw in yesterday’s posting, Ecuador.
Mexico, for example, under the threat of an economy-killing tariff, has reportedly stationed 10,000 National Guard troops on its southern border and 15,000 troops on its border with the U.S. Guatemala and Panama, to name two governments, have been receiving pressure to declare themselves “safe third” countries, in which migrants heading to the U.S. would have to, under international agreement, apply for asylum in those countries, not the U.S. Ecuador, the chief entry point for “extra-continental” migrants, has revised its no-visa policy for certain countries, primarily those in Africa, possibly under threats of aid cuts by the United States. In addition, the “Remain-in-Mexico” policy (otherwise known as MPP) instituted by the Department of Homeland Security has thus far kept substantial numbers of asylum seekers off American soil while they await the adjudication of their cases.
While immigration restrictionists are right to criticize the President for lack of progress on building a border wall, among other failures, it is not true that nothing has been done, and these diplomatic efforts are bearing some fruit, if not enough.
For more see, Breitbart News.