Hundreds of migrants rushed the southern United States border in California on Nov. 25, while chucking projectiles at Border Patrol agents. They were pushed back by tear gas and some will be deported by Mexico.
Hundreds of people rushed the border, dismantled part of the fence, and began streaming through the opening. But they were pushed back by tear gas launched by United States officers as they tried to cross a second wall.
Mexican Interior Minister Alfonso Navarrete said that the migrants were encouraged by some of the caravan’s leaders to rush the border.
Mexico said it would repair the damaged fence but would not deploy military forces to the border.
The other caravans with thousands of people each were still on their way to the border.
The ministry said that migrants should accept the asylum offered by Mexico, noting that it includes work, health care, education, and other benefits.
Migrants were offered temporary asylum under the program while they were in southern Mexico, but most migrants rejected the offer.
On Sunday, Mexico’s Interior Ministry said that the country has sent 11,000 Central Americans back to their home countries since Oct. 19. Of that number, 1,906 were part of the caravans.
ViolenceThe migrants, who are overwhelmingly young males, attacked Border Patrol agents by hurling rocks at them. The U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) considers a rock a weapon.
“The perpetrators will be prosecuted. I will continue to aggressively support DHS personnel as they work to safely secure our border,” she said.
She said that the government was forced to close the San Ysidro border port of entry because of the large number of migrants trying to illegally enter the United States.
“They attempted to breach legacy fence infrastructure along the border & sought to harm CBP personnel by throwing projectiles at them,” she said. “DHS will not tolerate this type of lawlessness and will not hesitate to shut down [Port of Entries] for security reasons.”
Trump said that Mexico should deport the migrants.
“Do it by plane, do it by bus, do it anyway you want, but they are NOT coming into the U.S.A. We will close the Border permanently if need be. Congress, fund the WALL!” he said in a statement on Nov. 26.
HistoryLarge groups of migrants have tried crossing the border before, with a group of more than 100 clashing with Border Patrol agents in November 2013.
“Agents said the incident harked to the days in the 1990s when migrants would run across the border en masse, in so-called banzai runs that would overwhelm agents,” the Times reported.
“As the crowd Sunday crossed the Tijuana River into California, more than one dozen agents responded to the border fence atop the levee and deployed pepper spray to hold them back, triggering the melee,” the report continued.
In 2007, the Border Patrol said that agents were attacked nearly 1,000 times over a one-year period, prompting them to use tear gas and pepper spray. Officials said the tactics could save lives. Some migrants would hurl large rocks at agents to distract them as groups crossed the border. About two-thirds of the attacks were with rocks and most of the rest were physical assaults.
Another agent, Elley Taylor, was driving a vehicle when a large rock struck the hood of the car. “The only thing you can think is, ‘I’m glad that that wasn’t my head.’ There’s no way to see it coming,” Taylor said.