On Thursday, Jan. 2, the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) announced an expansion of the program known as Migrant Protection Protocols to transfer those arriving at the Arizona border directly to Mexico.
According to a press release from DHS, with the expansion of the Migrant Protection Protocols Program, also known as “Remain in Mexico,” asylum-seekers arriving at the Arizona border will be returned to Mexico while their applications are adjudicated in the U.S. immigration court system.
Previously, DHS transferred those who were detained first to the city of El Paso, Texas, and then to City of Juarez in Mexico.
According to The Daily Caller, DHS acting Secretary Chad Wolf has acknowledged that the Migrant Protection Protocols (MPP) program has helped control the immigration crisis.
“MPP has been an extremely effective tool as the United States, under the leadership of President Trump, continues to address the ongoing humanitarian and security crisis at the border,” Wolf said in a written statement on Thursday.
“The department is fully committed to the program and will continually work with the government of Mexico to expand and strengthen it. I am confident in the program’s continued success in adjudicating meritorious cases quickly and preventing fraudulent claims,” Wolf added.
According to Reuters, under the MPP program, the United States has already sent more than 56,000 migrants to Mexico, most of them from the northern triangle region of Central America, seeking asylum in the United States.
The expansion of the migrant care program will allow patrols that stop migrants near Tucson, Arizona and then transfer them to Nogales, Mexico.
In the fiscal year 2019 —which ended Sept. 30—the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement detained approximately 143,000 people, about 13,000 fewer than last year, while deporting about 10,000 more illegal aliens than the previous year, a total of 267,258.
Ninety-one percent of those deported included people with criminal convictions or criminal charges pending at the time of arrest. Arrests, however, fell to 143,000 from 159,000.
As noted by The Daily Caller, President Trump’s administration has implemented various directives to help manage the current border crisis, as well as concluding asylum agreements with several Central American governments to reduce the waves of migrants arriving daily at the border with the United States.