February 24, 2024
Photo: REUTERS. Some thousands of migrants take shelter as they await to be processed near the Del Rio International Bridge after crossing the Rio Grande river into the U.S. from Ciudad Acuna in Del Rio, Texas.

By:Ereny Guirguis 

 

 

At the central stage:

On Friday, Del Rio’s mayor declared a state of emergency, as around 12,000 migrants and most of them are Haitians gathered and crowded under the international bridge in South Texas. Those migrants are waiting for either deportation from U.S. authorities or deciding to stay put and seek asylum.  Del Rio’s mayor said that as a security measure, the state is closing the toll booths on the international bridge connecting the city to Ciudad Acuña to halt traffic across the bridge. As a result, to the influx of migrants from Haitian to the Texas border town over the past week, the United States authorities has started flying migrants out of a Texas border town and sending them back to their home country. During the last week, many videos and pictures showed that the U.S. border agents used reins like whips to intimidate migrants trying to cross the river. Democrats have expressed their anger over and criticism for this in incident. DHS Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas commented on this incident and stressed that agents involved in this incident had been pulled from front-line duties.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Picture: Washington post. A U.S. Border Patrol agent on horseback tries to stop a Haitian migrant from entering an encampment on the banks of the Rio Grande in Texas

On Sunday, US authorities accelerated three flights carrying more than 320 Haitian migrants who illegally entered the US borders to their home, and these flights landed at the Haiti’s Port-au-Prince airport, the capital. Two more flights arrived in Haiti on Monday. The US authorities declared that it will accelerate more flights to Haitian the next days.

While the U.S. by law is required to hear out asylum claims, U.S. officials are deporting the Haitians under a public-health authority known as Title 42, which the administration says allows it to rapidly expel migrants at the border to help prevent the spread of Covid-19 in the U.S

 

Decoding in detail:

Since the devastating Haitian earthquake in 2010, large numbers of Haitians have left their Caribbean nation and migrated to the United States. Over the past months, there was a huge increase Haitian migrant, besides the political, economic crisis, and humanitarian crises Haiti is facing including most recently an assassinated president and a deadly earthquake. The Pandemic also plays an important role in Haitian ‘a decision to move north.

 

There are two main reasons behind the huge numbers of Haitian migrants to the U.S. The first reason is the deteriorating situations in the countries that Haitians lived in. The second reason is the perception that Biden administration makes it easy for migrants to get into the U.S.

 

Biden administration made some significant changes to Donald trump’s immigration policy, as Biden administration focused on reducing deportations, as well as Biden administration granted temporary protracted procedures and status for those thousands of illegal Haitian migrants who came to the U.S.   However, President Biden continued to use, his predecessor’s, Trump’s most contentious enforcement tools to expel migrants as quickly as possible.

 

Therefore, those immigrants over the past week were met by Border Patrol agents and deportation efforts. The spokesmen of Biden administration respond faster to the influx of migrants and stressed that the administration took quick steps to increase removal flights of Haitians from the border and said that all migrants without legitimate claim will be removed and they will be sent back to their country of origin. The administration also continues to warn Haitian migrants from entering the country without authorization or legitimate claim.

Late Friday, CBP took the decision to close the Del Rio Port of Entry late Friday to gain control of the influx, and said that this temporary closure is necessary to “to respond to urgent safety and security needs presented by an influx of migrants into Del Rio and is effective immediately”

 

Standpoint

This influx of migrants presents a new challenge to Joe Biden and put the spotlight on the growing migration crisis that triggered by the overlapping and multiple calamities that have beset Haiti. Biden administration will be able to fix this crisis and find a solution if it cooperates and works with the countries of origin of those migrants to handle the situation.

 

 

References

Qwen ,Q.(2021). Biden admin outlines response to surge of Haitian migrants at border.abc news . Retrieved from: https://abcnews.go.com/Politics/biden-admin-outlines-response-surge-haitian-migrants-border/story?id=80098439

Phillips,A. (2021). Why are there thousands of Haitian migrants at the Texas border?. Washington posts. Retrieved from : https://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/2021/09/21/haiti-migrants-texas-border/