Washington, Oct 3 (IANS): US Border Patrol apprehended more than 200,000 migrants crossing the country's border with Mexico unlawfully in September, marking the highest so far this year, according to an official from the Department of Homeland Security (DHS).
The latest figure marked an increase from August, when Border Patrol arrested around 181,000 migrants crossing between ports of entry, reports CNN.
September's tally is the highest since December 2022, when more than 222,000 migrants were apprehended.
“We remain vigilant and expect to see fluctuations, knowing that smugglers continue to use misinformation to prey on vulnerable individuals,” CNN quoted the DHS spokesperson as saying
“DHS has used its executive authorities to improve processing, strengthen consequences at the border, and more quickly remove individuals who fail to establish a lawful basis to remain in the country.”
The spokesperson also said that the Department has repatriated more than 281,000 individuals since May while “expanding refugee processing and family reunification options”.
This week, Secretary of State Antony Blinken, Secretary of Homeland Security Alejandro Mayorkas, Attorney General Merrick Garland and White House Homeland Security adviser Liz Sherwood-Randall will meet with their Mexican counterparts in Mexico City for annual security talks, during which migration is said to be a main point of discussion.