Trump: We Have the Right to Protect Our Borders

By Melanie Arter | September 24, 2019 | 1:08pm EDT
(Photo by SAUL LOEB / AFP/Getty Images)

( – In a speech to the U.N. General Assembly on Tuesday, President Donald Trump defended America’s right to enforce its borders and warned those advocating for open borders that their policies are “cruel and evil” and are “empowering criminal organizations.”

“Here in the Western Hemisphere, we are joining with our partners to ensure stability and opportunity all across the region. In that mission, one of our most critical challenges is illegal immigration, which undermines prosperity, rips apart societies and empowers ruthless criminal cartels. Mass illegal migration is unfair, unsafe, and unsustainable for everyone involved,” he said.


Trump said that countries who take in illegal immigrants “are overburdened with more migrants than they can responsibly accept, and the migrants themselves are exploited, assaulted and abused by vicious coyotes.”

“Nearly one-third of women who make the journey north to our border are sexually assaulted along the way. Yet here in the United States and around the world, there is a growing cottage industry of radical activists and non-governmental organizations that promote human smuggling. These groups encourage illegal migration and demand the erasure of national borders,” the president said.



Trump had a message for “open border activists who cloak themselves in the rhetoric of social justice.”

“Your policies are not just. Your policies are cruel and evil. You are empowering criminal organizations that prey on innocent men, women and children. You put your own false sense of virtue before the lives, well-being, and countless innocent people. When you undermine border security, you are undermining human rights and human dignity,” he said.

Each country has the right to protect its borders, Trump said, and so does the United States.

“Many of the countries here today are coping with the challenges of uncontrolled migration. Each of you has the absolute right to protect your borders, and so of course does our country. Today, we must resolve to work together to end human smuggling, end human trafficking, and put these criminal networks out of business for good,” the president said.

“To our country, I can tell you sincerely, we are working closely with our friends in the region, including Mexico, Canada, Guatemala, Honduras, El Salvador, and Panama, to uphold the integrity of borders and ensure safety and prosperity for our people,” he said.

Trump thanked Mexican President Andrés Manuel López Obrador for putting 27,000 troops on the border.

“Mexico is showing us great respect, and I respect them in return. The U.S., we have taken very unprecedented action to stop the flow of illegal immigration,” he said.

Trump then addressed illegal immigrants thinking about crossing illegally into the United States, making it clear that trying to sneak into the country will backfire.

“To anyone conducting crossings of our border illegally, please hear these words: Do not pay the smugglers. Do not pay the coyotes. Do not put yourself in danger. Do not put your children in danger, because if you make it here, you will not be allowed in. You will be promptly returned home. You will not be released into our country,” he said. “As long as I am president of the United States, we will enforce our laws and protect our borders.”



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