The number of migrants authorities encountered at the U.S.-Mexico border in May shattered all Department of Homeland Security (DHS) records.
During the month, border authorities encountered 239,416 migrants at the southern border, U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) announced Wednesday. May’s encounters exceeded April’s record of 234,088 migrants encountered since DHS began recording southwest border encounters.
Roughly one quarter of those encountered at the southern border had already been encountered in the last year by border authorities and 69% were single adults, according to CBP. The number of unaccompanied children was 14,699, a 21% increase from May.
The Daily Caller News Foundation observed hundreds of migrants crossing into the Yuma sector in late May from mainly Colombia and Peru, while others were from Central America, Eastern Europe and South Asia. The crossings occurred when the pandemic public health order Title 42, which used to quickly expel migrants, was set to end before a federal judge intervened.
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Migrants TheDCNF interviewed after they crossed into Yuma were taken into Border Patrol custody and later released to nongovernmental organizations, where they obtained travel and made their way to family and friends in the U.S. Many of them were released with court dates in 2023, they told TheDCNF.
CBP Commissioner Chris Magnus claimed that single adults and families are “expelled, where appropriate, under Title 42.” There were 100,699 migrants expelled under the order in May, according to CBP.
“As temperatures start to rise in the summer, human smugglers will continue to exploit vulnerable populations and recklessly endanger the lives of migrants for financial gain,” Magnus said. “The terrain along the Southwest Border is extreme, the summer heat is severe, and the miles of desert that migrants must hike after crossing the border are unforgiving. Our message to those who would try and gain illegal entry to the United States remains the same – don’t make the dangerous journey only to be sent back.”
CBP didn’t immediately respond to a request for comment.