Border Patrol agents are reporting growing numbers of rescue operations involving migrants. US Border Patrol Chief Jason Owens has published pictures on Twitter showing some of the rescues and highlighting that his officers are themselves placed in danger as they take long journeys on foot through rough terrain and in scorching temperatures.
Rescue missions involve migrants collapsing from heat, or becoming victims of violence at the hands of fellow border jumpers. In one incident, emergency medical technicians treated two migrants for head injuries after they were pushed from a moving train.
John Modlin, border patrol chief of the Tucson sector, provided figures for the preceding week, which included 11,000 apprehensions, 43 rescues, 15 human smuggling events, and 10 narcotics seizures.
The crisis on the southern border is worsening continually. Between October 1, 2022, and June 30, 2023, Border Patrol officers rescued more than 25,000 migrants, up from just under 13,000 in 2021. In 2020, the figure was 5,071. This represents a 400% increase between the Trump administration and President Biden’s.
Former President Trump has vowed to close the border if he is elected in 2024 and his record of overseeing much lower levels is likely to stand him in good stead. He said he will take action on immigration on his first day back at the White House, and his plans include an immediate halt to birthright citizenship and the most extensive immigrant round-up and deportation in the history of the United States.
Trump said his policy would end a major incentive driving illegal immigration and deter migrants from coming. He added that it would “encourage many of the aliens Joe Biden has unlawfully let into our country to go back to their home countries. They must go back.”
Republican Florida Governor Ron DeSantis, still trailing Trump in the polls, has promised similar moves and added that drug traffickers bringing Fentanyl and other lethal potions across the border will be shot dead on site.