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AFP
October 9, 2019

US detained one million migrants in 12 months

World

AFP
October 9, 2019

WASHINGTON: US border agents arrested or stopped nearly one million undocumented migrants at the southern border with Mexico in the last 12 months, the most in more than a decade, a top official said on Tuesday.

The surge came amid President Donald Trump’s tough efforts to halt illegal immigration, which began to show results only in the last three months, when border arrests plummeted. Acting Director of Customs and Border Protection (CBP) Mark Morgan said migrants arrested at the border fell to just over 52,000 in September, the final month of the 2019 fiscal year, down from over 144,000 in May and the lowest monthly figure in one year.

The surge came mainly from Central American migrants fleeing poverty and violence, crossing in large groups and family units into the US from Mexico and turning themselves in to ask for asylum.

The Trump administration has stepped up efforts to discourage an exodus from Honduras, Guatemala and El Salvador by asking Mexico to impede their transit and requiring them to apply for asylum in the first country they enter -- meaning either Guatemala or Mexico.

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