Currents News Staff
Tension on the southern border, as thousands of Central American migrants seeking asylum in the U.S. hope to enter the country through Mexico.
An escalation Sunday as border patrol agents fired tear gas at migrants, including women and children, after a protest devolved into chaos.
Hundreds of migrants overwhelming Mexican police and blockades, attempting to enter the country illegally.
“The group immediately started throwing rocks and debris at our agents, taunting the agents. And we had two or three agents at a time initially, facing hundreds of people at a time. They deployed tear gas to protect themselves and to protect the border,” said Rodney Scott, Chief Patrol Agent, San Diego Sector Border Patrol.
“No one wants any border officer to be in danger but from what we know, this was an overuse of force. I mean, there are women and children out there. Using tear gas in this situation does not seem justified,” said Lee Gelernt, Deputy Director, ACLU Immigrants’ Rights Project.
U.S. officials arrested dozens and shut down the busiest port of entry along its Mexico border.
President Trump seized on the unrest saying “Mexico wants to see if they can get it straightened out but we’ve, during certain times, as you know, closed the border. They’re not coming into the United States. They will not be coming in.”
But not all republicans support a border shutdown. “We would prefer that we keep it open so let’s work really hard to make sure we’re addressing the asylum seekers before they actually come over the border,” said Sen. Joni Ernst from Iowa.