25 October 2018
President Donald Trump Thursday claimed he’s sending over 800 more military soldiers to the southern border to prevent thousands of Central American migrants escaping poverty and violence and entering the United States of America.
“I am bringing out the military for this National Emergency. They will be stopped!” Trump wrote on Twitter, referring to the thousands of migrants that are finding their way through Mexico against all odds.
Earlier Thursday several media outlets cited Defense Secretary Jim Mattis as expecting the approval of 800 troops being dispatched to the southern border to assist border patrol agents, according to unnamed high level US officials.
But Bill Speaks, a spokesperson from the Pentagon,’ told EFE the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) that no such request had been filed, and that they were monitoring events at the border.
Speaks did confirm that the DHS and the Defense Department are indeed discussing how to help the Customs and Border Protection (CBP) office.
It’s still unclear if troops will actually be deployed.
Trump had said Monday, that he warned the border patrol and the army about the caravan and called the asylum-seekers a “national emergency.”
There are more than 8,000 migrants crossing Mexico and trying to reach the U.S. border, fleeing from violence in their own countries. They’re facing a difficult journey in which many have lost their lives, made even more difficult with repressive measures by the governments of Mexico and Guatemala.
Meanwhile, further south in Guatemala, a second caravan carrying more than a thousand people that had formed earlier this week, but since broken up into smaller groups, also pushed on northwards.
The US is about to undergo its mid-term elections and the Republican’s control of the Senate and the House of Representatives is at stake, for which Trump’s administration has been capitalizing on the migrant caravan to increase sympathy from conservative sectors of society and please old supporters.
Trump had already sent members of the National Guard to the southern border as a measure to deal with another migrant caravan that started off from southern Mexico.