Pentagon could send thousands more troops to US-Mexico border

An agent with the U.S. Border Patrol Tactical Unit guards the U.S. side of the border wall with Mexico in Brownsville Texas U.S

An agent with the U.S. Border Patrol Tactical Unit guards the U.S. side of the border wall with Mexico in Brownsville Texas U.S

One U.S. official said the troops will be sent initially to staging bases in California, Texas and Arizona while the CBP works out precisely where it wants the troops positioned.

O'Shaughnessy said the mission of what's being called Operation Faithful Patriot is to harden the border in preparation for the caravan of asylum-seeking migrant families making its way north through Mexico.

Mr Trump, who has seized upon the Central American migrant caravan in campaign rallies ahead of the vote, said on Twitter that the military would be waiting for the procession - suggesting a far more direct role in confronting the migrants than U.S. defence officials have previously suggested.

The US President said that those illegal immigrants who enter the United States and request for asylum will not be released as long as their cases will not be considered by the immigration court.

U.S. officials told Reuters they would begin deploying as soon as Tuesday and their mission was authorised through to mid-December, a date that could be extended.

The troops are expected to perform a wide variety of functions such as building tents and barricades and transporting supplies for the Border Patrol, and not be involved in policing the border, officials said.

On Sunday, one migrant died after he was hit with a rubber bullet when Mexican federal police rebuffed another group of migrants who tried to enter the country over the global bridge.

President Donald Trump has been tweeting repeatedly about the caravan, calling significant attention to it ahead of the mid-term elections.




It remains unclear why the administration was choosing to send active-duty troops given that they will be limited to performing the support functions the Guard already is doing.

The move represents a massive military build-up along the border, where some 2,000 National Guardsmen are already working to provide help to overwhelmed authorities.

"By the end of the week, we will deploy over 5,200 soldiers to the southwest border", Air Force General Terrence O'Shaughnessy, head of the U.S. military's Northern Command, told reporters.

The migrants rejected in a show of hands vote the offer for asylum, though organizers nor migrants elaborated on why they would keep traveling despite the offer.

The caravan, once 7,000-strong, has dwindled to about 3,500 men, women, and, children largely escaping poverty and violence in Central America. Guatemala's Interior Ministry said Guatemalan police officers were injured when the migrant group broke through border barriers on Guatemala's side of the bridge. One of the migrants died from the confrontation. We will, if necessary, to increase the number of military.

"Please go back, you will not be admitted into the United States unless you go through the legal process".

Military personnel are legally prohibited from engaging in immigration enforcement.

Mattis told reporters traveling with him Sunday that details of the deployment are still being worked out but he should have them Sunday night. USA officials have told Reuters the support mission would be coordinated by the US military's Northern Command. They were deported. The department said in a statement that the men were part of "the migrant caravan", but did not say which group or specify when they were detained at checkpoints in the southern state of Chiapas.

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