United States Takes Concrete Measures to Stop Illegal Immigration

REF# 2019-20                                                                                         September 18, 2019

Press Release
United States Takes Concrete Measures to Stop Illegal Immigration

Today, President Donald Trump traveled to the U.S. southern border to highlight the United States’ incredible progress in constructing a border wall system to stop illegal migration and narcotics trafficking.  The border wall system is one of a series of security measures, asylum policies, and regional initiatives that have made illegal entry to the United States more difficult now than at any other time in history.

In addition to constructing physical barriers, the United States has greatly increased migrant detention and deportation.  In fiscal year 2019 U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) has detained more than 811,000 aliens at the U.S. southern border and U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) has removed more than 250,000.  There are also now more than 400 additional Department of Homeland Security (DHS) investigators on the border specially trained to identify family fraud and child smuggling, who have already identified thousands of fraudulent family units.  The United States has also worked with the governments of Guatemala, Honduras and El Salvador to streamline the removal process for illegal immigrants from these countries.

Under newly-revised rules, individuals requesting asylum at the U.S. border are no longer allowed to enter and remain in the United States.  Claimants are transferred to Mexico, where they must wait until eventually called to their hearings in U.S. immigration courts.  Additionally, to be eligible for U.S. asylum claimants must have previously applied for, and been denied, asylum in the first country they transited on their journey.  Asylum claimants can expect to be sent back to their home countries or, if their claim is considered, to wait outside the United States during U.S. immigration court hearings.

The United States has partnered with governments in the region to achieve the shared goal of reducing illegal migration to address the humanitarian and security crisis at the U.S. southern border.  Mexico has deployed over 27,000 troops to patrol its borders and is turning away migrants who attempt to enter illegally.  The United States has also signed a series of agreements with Guatemala, including the Asylum Cooperation Agreement (ACA), and is discussing new agreements with Honduras and El Salvador.  When the ACA in Guatemala enters into force, it will allow the United States to transfer certain third-country nationals seeking asylum or other forms of protection in the United States to Guatemala to have their asylum or other protection claims adjudicated there.  President Trump expressed his appreciation during his visit to the U.S.-Mexico border today saying, “I really want to thank… Honduras, Guatemala, El Salvador; the leaders of those countries that really have been working with us very strongly.”

The United States has strengthened its southern border and is enforcing its immigration laws.  Those who try to enter the United States illegally will be apprehended and deported.  It is becoming harder to illegally cross the U.S. border.