WASHINGTON (Reuters) - U. S. border agents expelled roughly a third of migrant parents and children traveling together and caught crossing the southwestern border in March, according to U.S. government data, undercutting a claim by President Joe Biden that most families are being sent back to Mexico.
About 17,000 of the nearly 53,000 parents and children caught at the border in March were expelled under a COVID-related public health order known as Title 42, an administration official said during a background briefing with reporters on Wednesday.
The rest were placed in U. S. immigration proceedings, in keeping with the practice before Title 42, which was implemented under former President Donald Trump in March 2020.
“We’re sending back the vast majority of the families that are coming,” Biden said during a March 25 news conference. “We’re trying to work out now, with Mexico, their willingness to take more of those families back.”
Commenting on the apparent disconnect between Biden’s statement and the latest figures, White House spokesman Vedant Patel said the administration’s policy is to expel single adults and families to Mexico under Title 42 if they are caught crossing the southwest border illegally, but he added that does not always happen.
“In the event that Mexico is not able to receive an individual or a family, they are placed in immigration proceedings in the United States,” he said in a statement.
Biden has defended his administration’s handling of a rise in border c... (Read more)
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