December 21, 2023

This will be the last Daily Border Links post until January 2, unless events demand otherwise. Best wishes for a happy holiday.


Border Patrol processed about 10,500 migrants on Tuesday (December 19). The number for Monday (December 18) was 10,800, about 40 percent of them families or unaccompanied children. Including people who came to ports of entry, the Washington Examiner reported, the totals were 14,509 on Monday and 12,242 on Tuesday. As of Tuesday evening, CBP had 27,159 migrants in custody nationwide. With most days topping 10,000 in recent weeks, the system is at a “breaking point,” CNN’s Priscilla Álvarez reported.

About 4,400 of Tuesday’s 10,500 migrants crossed in Border Patrol’s Del Rio Sector in mid-Texas. There, in Eagle Pass, “I visited a (holding) facility with a maximum capacity of 1,000. There were nearly 6,000. I’ve never seen it this high,” Rep. Tony Gonzales (R), who represents this area and much of the Texas-Mexico border, told Fox News.

Though CBP has not yet published November migration numbers, Border Patrol Chief Jason Owens told CNN that the agency apprehended about 192,000 migrants in November, a 2 percent increase over 188,000 in October.

Acting CBP chief Troy Miller told CNN that unscrupulous travel agencies in some countries, like Senegal, are offering travel packages to the U.S.-Mexico border.

Mexican business associations are protesting CBP’s temporary closures of railroad bridges in Eagle Pass and El Paso, which account for about 36 percent of train cargo entering the United States from Mexico. Trains allegedly are crossing with migrants aboard, though railroad companies dispute that. In Chihuahua, Mexico, “We thought that the arrival of migrants had dropped significantly, but since last week it increased to about a thousand people on each freight train trip,” said state official Óscar Ibáñez Hernández, who cited criminal groups misinforming migrants about the need to travel now.

President Joe Biden and Mexican President Andrés Manuel López Obrador are expected to speak this week about migration.

Near Lukeville, Arizona, where a large-scale arrival of migrants has led CBP to temporarily close the port of entry, smugglers have sawed through one segment of Trump-era border wall 41 times to let migrants pass through and turn themselves in to Border Patrol, the Washington Post reported.

Congress has gone home without a package of Ukraine and Israel aid, amid Republican demands that it come with restrictions to asylum and other migrant protections. “Talks between the White House and key senators have not veered widely from three main areas of discussion,” the Associated Press reported. Those are “toughening asylum protocols for migrants arriving at the U.S.-Mexico border; bolstering border enforcement with more personnel and high-tech systems; and deterring migrants from making the journey in the first place.”

Analyses and Feature Stories

“Our country steps into humanitarian crises all over the world. Why would we not do it inside our own boundaries?” asked a forensic anthropologist in New Mexico, where migrant deaths in the desert have been increasing drastically, High Country News reported.

Since 2022, four percent of Cuba’s population has migrated to the U.S.-Mexico border. That is one of five key trends in Cuban migration documented in a new WOLA analysis.

On the Right

Tags: News Links