News

U.S. sends more agents to border amid child immigrant crisis

U.S. sends more agents to border amid child immigrant crisis

BORDER PATROL:Detainees are escorted to an area to make phone calls as hundreds of mostly Central American immigrant children are being processed and held at the U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) Nogales Placement Center. Photo: Reuters

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – Homeland Security Secretary Jeh Johnson said Tuesday the United States is sending more agents to the border with Mexico to help deal with a flood of undocumented children, mostly from Central America, crossing into the United States.

One hundred and fifteen experienced agents have been sent from less active areas to the Rio Grande Valley, and a further 150 may join them, based on a review of operations there last week, Johnson said in testimony prepared for a congressional hearing on Tuesday.

In the fiscal year through September 2013, U.S. agents picked up more than 24,000 unaccompanied children at the southern border.

From October to mid-June this year, that number more than doubled to over 52,000, and U.S. authorities have been grappling with how best to deal with the crisis.

“We are talking about large numbers of children, without their parents, who have arrived at our border – hungry, thirsty, exhausted, scared and vulnerable. How we treat the children, in particular, is a reflection of our laws and our values,” Johnson said in his testimony.

(Reporting by Patricia Zengerle; Additional reporting by Doina Chiacu; Editing by Bernadette Baum)

Recent Headlines

11 hours ago in Local

Full Text and Audio of Obama’s Speech to Legislature

Obama Springfield 4

Click here for text and audio of President Obama's address to the Illinois General Assembly.

11 hours ago in Local

LISTEN: President Obama’s Full Speech at Hoogland Center for the Arts

Obama Springfield AP 3

Click here for President Obama's remarks at the Hoogland Center for the Arts

11 hours ago in Local

Lawmakers, Current and Past, React to Obama Speech

Obama Springfield AP

President Barack Obama visited Springfield Wednesday and had a lot to say to the General Assembly and Governor Rauner.

17 hours ago in Local

Obama: Citizens Are Turned Off By Current “Poisonous Political Climate” In U.S.

Obama speaks about the sequester in Washington

In his address, President Obama says people around the country are turned off by current "poisonous political climate."

17 hours ago in Local

Obama Reminiscing About Days In Illinois Legislature

Obama speaks about the sequester in Washington

President Obama reminisces about his days in the Illinois legislature.