Those countries include Pakistan and Iran, which have been linked to terrorism by the U.S. government.
In fiscal 2011, DHS data show that the U.S. Border Patrol component of DHS’ Customs and Border Protection agency apprehended 6,123 illegal aliens trying to cross into this country along the U.S.-Canada border.
The majority (3,145) of those apprehensions involved Mexican nationals. The remaining 2,978 were described as “Other than Mexicans” (OTMs). That OTM figure includes 164 illegal aliens who originated from what DHS referred to as “special interest countries.”
Customs and Border Protection provided CNSNews.com a country-by-country breakdown of the nations of origin for the 6,123 total apprehensions along the northern border, including the 2,978 OTMs.
In May 2011, the Inspector General of the Department of Homeland Security published a list of “specially designated countries” defined as those “that have shown a tendency to promote, produce, or protect terrorist organizations or their members.” The IG report included an appendix listing 34 nations, plus the West Bank and Gaza that DHS considers “specially designated countries.”
(The list of “specially designated countries” appended to the DHS IG report initially included Israel. However, after Israel’s presence on this list was reported by CNSNews, the DHS removed it and said it had been included by mistake, reducing the number of countries on the list from 35 to 34.)
In fiscal 2011, 164 nationals who came from 26 of the 34 specially designated countries were among those caught along the U.S.-Canada border. These included:
Saudi Arabia: 1
An estimated 51 percent of the 164 terrorism-linked aliens apprehended along the northern border came from Pakistan (27), Philippines (20), Turkey (15), Egypt (12), and Jordan (9).