More surveillance, express deportations, wristband controls… The U.S. shields its border from the arrival of thousands of migrants

More surveillance, express deportations, wristband controls… The U.S. shields its border from the arrival of thousands of migrants

U.S. President Joe Biden has already said it himself: the next few days will be “chaos” at the 3,200 kilometers of border with Mexico. This will be the case because this Thursday (at 00:00 on May 12, Washington time) Title 42 ceases to be in force. This regulation has served the country to expel undocumented migrants by not allowing them to apply for asylum.

Title 42 was enforced for its theoretical benefit to the public health of the country. The measure began to be applied in 2020 during the Donald Trump Administration, apropos of Covid, but the current Biden Administration has maintained it. Until today. In theory, the U.S. changes immigration policy.

Let people know that there is a legal way to get here and a non-legal way.”

“What we are doing now is to make the legal migration more agile, and the illegal migration shorter (…), so that people know that there are a legal way to get here and one that is not legal.“, Biden has explained. In reality, without 42, the White House recovers Title 8, the one that existed before, but with some changes.

Joe Biden, President of the United States (file).

As Department of Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas has said, the end of Title 42. “does not mean that our border is open.” Before journalists he has reminded that “crossing irregularly is against the law and those who do not qualify for aid will be quickly returned.”

Migrants at the border between Mexico and the United States.
Migrants on the United States-Mexico border.

In reality, if we put ourselves in the shoes of a Guatemalan migrant trying to enter the U.S., things are not getting any better, in other words, crossing is not going to be any easier now. Mayorkas assures that the fact that the 42 expires does not mean an open border, but rather “harsher consequences. (under Title 8) for persons who crossed the border illegally.”

Crossing irregularly is against the law and those who do not qualify for assistance will be turned back.”

Biden has maintained Title 42 and now that he is repealing it has approved a plan to make it more difficult for immigrants to apply for asylum based on Title 8. Adult asylum seekers are required that in order to make an appointment with U.S. officials or apply for asylum. in another country before arriving in the U.S., use a mobile app, CBP One.

Honduran migrants wearing masks due to the coronavirus pandemic walk through Poptun, Guatemala, towards the Mexican border, before being stopped by Guatemalan soldiers from returning to their country and entering regularly.

It was launched in January and will be maintained independently of Title 42. The method involves the. accelerated expulsion of certain immigrants.including asylum seekers, in a way that drew criticism from human rights groups.

Migrants next to the fence separating Mexico from the United States in Ciudad Juarez.
Migrants next to the fence separating Mexico from the U.S. in Ciudad Juarez.
Luis Torres / EFE

From Title 42 to Title 8

The decades-old application of 8 means that migrants could face more serious consequences for crossing illegally. Asylum seekers who cross the border without first applying for asylum could be removed and would have barred from entering the U.S. for at least five years.

Migrants wait for US authorities, between a barbed wire barrier and the border fence at the US-Mexico border, as seen from Ciudad Juarez, Mexico.

In return, under Title 8 the processing times are longer than those for removals under 42. The U.S. Administration has been devising the new mechanism for weeks. A few days ago it reported the opening of Processing Centers in several Latin American countries, with the objective that migrants receive advice before starting the irregular path, in order to learn about legal avenues.

This will be what happens to you: you will be sent back.”

Government officials announced new security measures Wednesday. It is what they call a “comprehensive, multi-agency, multinational” plan. based on law enforcement, deterrence and diplomacy. To manage the border humanely.” These are the main measures:

  • Families who may be deported but who express their intention to apply for asylum or who submit credible reasons why they might be in danger. in their home countries, they will be able to be dealt with more quickly.
  • Until the hearing, they will have to adhere to a curfew and Will wear a trackable anklet. to be monitored.
  • If their request for asylum is ultimately denied, they will be. deported in less than 30 days.
  • Hot returns: persons who are detected between several border crossing points will also be deported at that time.
  • The migrants who have not applied for asylum in a third country.if they have crossed from a Central American country to Mexico and from there to the U.S., they will not be eligible to do so in U.S. territory.

In the words of Mayorkas, the Secretary of the Department of Homeland Security, “This will be what happens to you: you will be sent back.” In fiscal year only 2022 more than 2.76 million were intercepted in the U.S. alone. undocumented immigrants.

Thousands already at the border

Media present at the southern U.S.-Mexico border report the arrival of increasing numbers of people at points such as the Mexican crossing at Ciudad Juarez, bordering El Paso. U.S. Customs and Border Protection is preparing for more than 10,000 migrants to cross the border each day. In fact, it is estimated that about 35,000 are already waiting on the ground.

Border agents clear the U.S. border with Mexico.
Border agents clear the U.S. border with Mexico.

Thus, in recent days, thousands of people have gathered at different points along the border. Many are waiting for the clock strikes midnight of the day appointed (the 12th) to try to cross at that time. Others, on the other hand, try to pass before before police presence is increased.

A group of people try to cross the El Chaparral checkpoint in the city of Tijuana, in the state of Baja California, Mexico.

They face temperatures of more than 30 degrees Celsius. with hardly any shady places. In addition, very strong winds caused a sandstorm that lasted several hours.


A crowd of immigrants on humanitarian parole gathered Wednesday in front of the offices of the NGO Team Brownsville in Texas. Among them were migrants from China, Venezuela and Central American countries..

Washington to deploy 24,000 “law enforcement officers,” 4,000 military and 1,000 new officials.

During the last two weeks, this NGO has been receiving between 800 and 1,000 asylum seekers a day.reports CNN. On Tuesday alone, it handled the papers of 844 migrants, including 30 children, and is operating at maximum capacity.

On the official side, Washington will deploy some 24,000 “law enforcement officers” On the border, plus about 400 “volunteers.” In addition, the dispatch of 1,500 military personnel to be added to the 2,500 already deployed to provide logistical and administrative support to immigration officers. Some 1,000 officers asylum officers to conduct credible fear interviews.

Kayleigh Williams