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El Paso, Texas, faces an unprecedented influx of migrants, with nearly 9,000 people crossing from Mexico on a single Saturday.
Mayor Oscar Leeser highlighted that the city’s daily asylum seekers have surged from around 350-400 to over 2,000 in just six weeks. This spike has stretched resources, filling shelters rapidly.
Within the last ten days, in collaboration with the US Border Patrol, the city has accommodated 6,500 individuals. Leeser stated during a press conference, “The city of El Paso only has so many resources and we have come to … a breaking point right now.” The majority of these migrants, coming primarily from Venezuela, Honduras, and Haiti, journey through dangerous routes.
Mayor Leeser revealed plans to establish a new shelter in El Paso and mentioned chartered buses transporting migrants to various cities. He emphasized that migrants were moving voluntarily to their chosen destinations and voiced concerns about the US immigration system, which he deemed “broken.” He cited issues like the El Paso shelter’s limited capacity and a significant portion of single male migrants in the current influx.
In light of the recent upswing in migrants, even after the numbers had dwindled due to restrictions announced in May, cities like Eagle Pass have declared states of emergency.
Amid these challenges, the Biden administration is deploying an additional 800 troops to assist border patrol along the southern border. Initiatives have also been introduced to handle asylum and visa applications within migrants’ countries of origin, and certain consequences have been highlighted for non-compliance, such as deportations.