The Border Patrol is sending migrants it intercepts crossing from Canada by plane to Texas to try to deter asylum seekers in the face of the sharp increase in crossings on the northern border, the Reuters news agency reported on Thursday based on testimonies. of witnesses and aerial records.
President Joe Biden will address this new border crisis during his visit to Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, which begins Thursday.
Agents from the Customs and Border Protection (CBP) office have transferred a hundred migrants in March on two flights from Plattsburgh, in New York and near the Canadian border, to the Texan cities of Harlingen and El Paso , according to Reuters
Migrants transferred from Plattsburgh disembark at the El Paso airport on March 21.
Jose Luis Gonzalez / REUTERS
Only in the last five months the crossings multiplied by 10
compared to the same period last year.
From October 1 to February 28, some 2,000 migrants crossed the border between Canada and the states of New Hampshire, Vermont and New York through the forests, compared with 200 crossings in the same period the previous year.
Most of them are Mexicans who do not require a visa to travel to Canada and then cross into the US.
A CBP officer told Reuters that
(47 Mexicans and one Colombian) were flown from Plattsburgh to Harlingen on March 13 for repatriation, calling the move "the consequence of crossing illegally."
Although he did not discuss a second flight from Plattsburgh to El Paso on March 21 that Reuters learned about from a witness who saw about
disembark from the plane, including men and women shackled, as well as three adults with a child and a baby.
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Biden will arrive in Canada on Thursday afternoon and on Friday he will meet with Trudeau to discuss, among other topics, this increase in crossings.
According to The New York Times, Trudeau has pledged to make changes to an asylum-seeking agreement with the United States, suggesting on Wednesday that they could be announced before Biden returns to Washington on Friday night.
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The United States and Canada signed the so-called Safe Third Country Agreement in 2002, which entered into force in 2004 and details that "asylum seekers
must request protection as refugees in the first safe country they arrive at
, unless they are eligible for an exception to the agreement.
Trudeau, has previously assured that his government is "very concerned" about the massive arrival of migrants and that he is working with his neighbor to modernize the said agreement to "reduce these irregular crossings and promote legal immigration."
Rescues due to the cold at the border
Two weeks ago, CBP beefed up its deployment with 25 more agents, but Clinton County, New York, sheriff David Favro and other locals who spoke to NBC News in Mooers, New York, said that's not enough.
“We are seeing more and more people, and it can be deadly terrain if you are not familiar with it,” said Favr, who days ago helped the Patrol rescue 39 migrants, some found with frozen clothing that had stuck to their bodies.
Mooers Fire Chief Todd Gumlaw was also recently in attendance to rescue two Mexican women who had become trapped in an icy swamp in the middle of the night.
Gumlaw, along with Border Patrol, local police and rescue teams provided first aid to the women and took them to a hospital to be treated for frostbite and hypothermia after they lost their shoes in the swamp.