(CNSNews.com) – U.S. Border Patrol Chief Carla Provost told Congress Thursday that in addition to the Central American countries that make up the Northern Triangle, illegal immigrants from 52 countries have illegally crossed the U.S. southern border.
“Smugglers falsely advertise a safe journey to the border, misleading families that anyone who arrives with a child will not be deported under current U.S. policies. While smugglers primarily target the Northern Triangle, family units from 52 countries have illegally crossed the southern border so far this year, Provost said during opening testimony at a House Homeland Security subcommittee hearing.
Three Central American countries make up the Northern Triangle: Guatemala, Honduras, and El Salvador.
“In just two weeks, more than 740 individuals from African nations – primarily family units have been apprehended in Del Rio sector alone, compared to only 108 who crossed the southern border in the first eight months of the fiscal year,” Provost said.
“Families from countries like Brazil, Nicaragua, Ecuador, Cuba, Peru, Romania, and Vietnam are taking the same pathways through Central America and Mexico to take advantage of the gaps in our system,” she added.
As CNSNews.com previously reported, a four-month-old baby from Romania and his father were among migrants crossing into the U.S. on the southern border in February 2018.
Also on the panel at the hearing, titled, “Examining the Department of Defense’s Deployment to the U.S.-Mexico Border,” were DoD’s Robert Salesses, who serves as deputy assistant secretary of Defense for Homeland Defense Integration and Defense Support of Civil Authorities, and a representative from the National Guard – Maj. Gen. Michael McGuire, adjutant general of the Arizona National Guard, director of Arizona Department of Emergency and Military Affairs.