True to his 2016 campaign pledge to tackle illegal immigration, and ahead of key midterm elections on November 6, 2018, American President Donald Trump says he could deploy as many as 15,000 men on the border with Mexico to prevent thousands of illegal migrants from Central American nations from crossing into the country, the BBC said.
Speaking to reporters at the White House on October 31, 2018, the American leader said “Nobody’s coming in … we’re not going to allow people to come in who don’t have the wellbeing of our country in mind.”
Only last week, officials indicated that about 800 to 1,000 troops might be sent. Later, they announced that about 5,200 were being deployed. The next day, the Air Force said more than the initially announced total was going, and pointedly rejected news reports that the number could reach 14,000.
Nevertheless, the troop numbers have kept changing at fast pace, with Trump taking a hard line against immigration. Meanwhile, the first caravan of about 4,000 migrants is about 1,600 km from the US border, with thousands of other people also on the way.
According to the Defence Department, the troops will come from North and South Carolina, Colorado, Illinois, Maryland, Georgia, Texas, Washington, Kentucky and Kansas. They will be stationed at an Air Force base and Army installation in Arizona, at several Marine facilities in the San Diego area, and in five locations in Texas, including Naval and Army bases.
President Trump has also promised to end “catch-and-release” policies by erecting tent cities to hold those crossing the border illegally. This week, he suggested that he could act by executive order to unilaterally end birth right citizenship for children born in the US of non-American parents.
Trump compared his plan to former President Barack Obama’s decision to use executive action to provide protection from prosecution and work status for some people brought to the US illegally as children.