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  • U.S. Customs and Border Protection agents participate in a test deployment during a large-scale operational readiness exercise at the Otay Mesa port of entry.

    U.S. Customs and Border Protection agents participate in a test deployment during a large-scale operational readiness exercise at the Otay Mesa port of entry. | Photo: Reuters file

Published 4 February 2019

President Trump attempted to justify the move suggesting that the Central American caravans, largely made up of women and children, were a security emergency.

The U.S. Department of State announced on Sunday the deployment of 3,750 additional troops to the Southwest border with Mexico during the next three months to bolster border customs and border protection.

The latest deployment raises the number of troops at the border to 4,530. The latest deployment was approved by the Pentagon in October 2018, with backing from Republicans in Congress.

The President attempted to justify the move suggesting that the Central American caravans, largely made up of women and children, were a security emergency. “It’s a national emergency, it’s other things and you know there ave been plenty of national emergencies called. And this really is an invasion of our country by human traffickers,” said the president during an interview with CBS.

This is the predominant type of response, but not the only one, to a situation involving the peaceful but desperate plight of migrants seeking better living conditions and escaping from poverty and violence, to the United States.

Recently, No More Deaths activists, a group providing emergency help to migrants crossing the border from Mexico to the U.S. were convicted for misdemeanors committed while leaving basic supplies such as water in desert areas which could help save their lives.

“If giving water to someone dying of thirst is illegal, what humanity is left in the law of this country,” said Catherine Gaffney who is also volunteering with the organization.

President Trump recently ended a government shutdown lasting 35 days with a cost of nearly US$3 billion and affecting close to 800,000 federal employees who were required to go without pay.

The longest shutdown in U.S. history ended on Friday when Trump and Congress agreed to temporary government funding - without money for his U.S.-Mexico border wall - as the effects of the shutdown intensified across the country.

If the executive and lawmakers are unable to reach a deal by Feb. 15, President Trump has threatened to conduct a new government shutdown or to declare a national emergency which would allow him to surpass government and obtain the resources he desires.


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