Faced with the overwhelming influx of Haitian migrants to the crude South Texas camp where almost 14,000 have already arrived, DHS plans a deportation blitz to Haiti as soon as Sunday, CNN reports.
Hoping to discourage more border-crossers from streaming into the US and to break the momentum of the massive influx into the Del Rio camp, Biden officials intend to maximize the deportations planning as many as eight flights per day.
Yet, Haitian authorities have so far agreed to accept at least three flights per day since the government’s ability to safely receive its citizens will take months, if not years, to secure in the current situation.
Biden administration is ready to send planeloads of migrants back to Haiti that is still reeling from July’s assassination of President Jovenel Moise and the major earthquake resulting in more than 2,000 deaths and thousands more injuries.
Those were the reasons behind the letter of more than 50 Democrats urging Biden administration this week to halt deportations to the country, but an official involved in the planning insisted that the flights are not a targeted measure aimed at Haitians alone.
DHS has previously taken other measures to address Haitians in the US, announcing new 18-month designation of Haiti for Temporary Protected Status. The designation is a form of humanitarian relief and applies to people in the US who would face extreme hardship if returned to homelands and allows them to legally work in the US.
US Customs and Border Protection’s data shows that the number of Haitians arriving at the US southern border has gradually increased since the spring with 7,580 Haitians encountered in August only, but the number of migrants under the Del Rio International Bridge according to Val Verde County Sheriff Joe Frank Martinez estimates had reached over 14.000.
Though it’s unclear how such a large number amassed so quickly, a lawyer for a migrant shelter north of Del Rio believes that misinformation that policies are about to change may have played a part in the increased arrivals of Haitians in the area un the last two or three weeks.
The potentially massive flight plan, which might include San Antonio, the nearest major city to Del Rio, among the departure cities, would hinge on how Haitians respond since they’ll have to choose between returning to Mexico or to risk being sent back to their impoverished homeland.
Texas Gov. Greg Abbott decided not to leave anything to chances and signed into law on Friday a $1.8 billion migrants deterring border security package envisaging building a wall and jailing migrants on state trespassing charges.
Abbott stressed that these funds are needed step up in doing what the Biden administration won’t after its open border policies made wat to the US to illegal immigration, crime, human trafficking and drug smuggling.