Illegal crossings on the US-Mexico border increase

Border authorities in the United States prevented people from entering the country illegally from Mexico more than 69,000 times in October, the sixth consecutive monthly increase and the highest level since July 2019.

Mark Morgan, Acting Commissioner for Customs and Border Protection (CBP), said deteriorating economic conditions were driving more people to travel to the United States.

There have also been a large number of people trying to cross the border on more than one occasion since March, when the US authorities began to expel people who entered illegally, in accordance with a special authority related to the pandemic, without giving them the opportunity. to apply for asylum.

Mexicans and many Central Americans are sent back to Mexico, most in a matter of two hours.

Recidivism rates – the percentage of people caught who had tried to enter at least once in the previous year – was 37% along the border for those expelled between March and September, according to CBP. Many were Mexican adults traveling alone.

Morgan told reporters that border authorities had more than 69,000 encounters in October, compared to 57,674 in September and 45,139 in October 2019. It was the highest number since the 81,777 recorded in July 2019, during the increased flow of asylum seekers from Central America.

The number offers a likely idea of ​​what President-elect Joe Biden will inherit upon assuming the presidency in January.

Biden has vowed to end many of President Donald Trump’s restrictions on asylum, including a policy to force asylum seekers to wait in Mexico for their hearings in US immigration courts.

Biden has not said whether he will extend the special authority related to the pandemic to expel people without an opportunity to seek asylum.

The Trump administration has built 645 kilometers (402 miles) of the wall promised by Trump on the border with Mexico and could reach 724 kilometers (450 miles) by the end of the year, said Robert Perez, deputy commissioner of CBP.

Biden says he is suspending construction of the wall.