Illegal immigrants who have gathered in a Texas bridge area will be expelled, the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) announced Saturday.
The DHS made the announcement after various reports said that thousands of illegal immigrants are amassing under an international bridge in Del Rio, Texas.
Some 9,000 illegal immigrants, including Haitians, Cubans, and Venezuelans, were in the area, Val Verde County Sheriff Joe Frank Martinez said on Thursday. However, the number has increased to 14,000, a Border Patrol source told The Epoch Times.
The immigration authorities have temporarily closed the Del Rio Port of Entry and rerouted traffic from Del Rio to Eagle Pass, which is about 60 miles away.
The illegal immigrants are being relocated to other processing locations to accelerate the deportation process.
“DHS is conducting regular expulsion and removal flights to Haiti, Mexico, Ecuador, and Northern Triangle countries,” the agency said in a statement.
Updated: Now 14,000 illegal immigrants under bridge, per Border Patrol source.— Charlotte Cuthbertson (@charlottecuthbo) September 18, 2021
International bridge is closed to all traffic as massive camp of mostly Haitians forms.
Travelers going to/from Mexico need to travel about 60 miles to Eagle Pass crossing. pic.twitter.com/E33bRytoRS
The number of illegal immigrants gathered in the bridge area has skyrocketed in less than a week, from only a couple of hundred under the bridge on Sept. 9.
Del Rio Mayor Bruno Lozano said earlier the week that another 20,000 are on their way.
“I’m deeply frustrated. The thing that I worry about is a stampede. The thing I worry about is terrorism,” Lozano said.
“This is not secure. This is not defensible,” he said, looking toward the wide-open border and the number of people walking back and forth across it.
“We don’t really know who they are.”
Texas Gov. Greg Abbott said that he has directed the Texas Department of Public Safety and the Texas National Guard to “maintain their presence at and around ports of entry to deter crossings.”
By Allen Zhong