Trump backs use of ‘very safe’ tear gas on crowd of migrants


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He mentioned it was “a really minor type of the tear gasoline itself” that he assured was “very protected”.

Migrants and journalists run from tear gas launched by US agents at the Mexico-US border.

Migrants and journalists run from tear gasoline launched by US brokers on the Mexico-US border.Credit score:AP

With out providing proof, he additionally claimed that a number of the girls should not actually dad and mom however are as a substitute “grabbers” who steal youngsters in order that they have a greater likelihood of being granted asylum within the US.

The showdown on the San Diego-Tijuana border crossing has thrown into sharp aid two competing narratives concerning the caravan of migrants hoping to use for asylum however caught on the Mexican aspect. Mr Trump portrays them as a risk to US nationwide safety, intent on exploiting America’s asylum legislation, however others insist he’s exaggerating to stoke fears and obtain his political targets.

The sheer measurement of the caravan makes it uncommon.


“I believe it is so unprecedented that everybody is hanging their very own fears and political agendas on the caravan,” mentioned Andrew Selee, president of the Migration Coverage Institute, a nonpartisan assume tank that research immigration. “You possibly can name it scary, you possibly can name it hopeful, you possibly can name it an indication of human distress. You possibly can hold no matter angle you need to on it.”

Mr Trump rails in opposition to migrant caravans as harmful teams of principally single males. That view featured closely in his speeches through the midterm election marketing campaign when a number of had been a whole bunch of kilometres away, travelling on foot. Officers have mentioned some 500 members are criminals however have not backed that up with particulars on why they assume so. On Monday, Trump tweeted that the caravan on the border included “stone chilly criminals”.

Mario Figueroa – Tijuana’s social companies division director who’s overseeing operations on the sports activities complicated the place a lot of the migrants within the caravan are staying – mentioned as of Friday that of the four,938 staying there, 933 had been girls, 889 had been youngsters and three,105 had been males, which incorporates fathers touring with households together with single males.

US Customs and Border Patrol officers form a line along the San Ysidro border crossing.

US Customs and Border Patrol officers kind a line alongside the San Ysidro border crossing.Credit score:AP

The US army mentioned on Monday that about 300 troops who had been deployed in south Texas and Arizona as a part of a border safety mission have been moved to California for comparable work. The army’s function is proscribed largely to erecting boundaries alongside the border and offering transportation and logistical assist to Customs and Border Safety.

Democratic legislators and immigrant rights teams blasted the border brokers’ Sunday techniques.


“These youngsters are barefoot. In diapers. Choking on tear gasoline,” California governor-elect Gavin Newsom tweeted. “Girls and youngsters who left their lives behind – in search of peace and asylum – had been met with violence and worry. That is not my America.”

US Customs and Border Safety Commissioner Kevin McAleenan mentioned the administration’s considerations concerning the caravan “had been borne out and on totally show” on Sunday.

McAleenan mentioned a whole bunch – maybe greater than 1,000 – individuals tried to hurry car lanes on the San Ysidro crossing. Mexican authorities estimated the group at 500. The chaos adopted what started as a peaceable march to enchantment for the US to hurry processing of asylum claims.

Border Safety brokers launched pepper spray balls along with tear gasoline in what officers mentioned had been on-the-spot choices made by brokers. US troops deployed to the border on Mr Trump’s orders weren’t concerned within the operation.

“The brokers on scene, of their skilled judgment, made the choice to deal with these assaults utilizing much less deadly units,” McAleenan mentioned.

The scene was paying homage to the 1980s and early 1990s, when giant teams of migrants rushed car lanes at San Ysidro and overwhelmed Border Patrol brokers in close by streets and fields.

US authorities made 69 arrests Sunday. Mexican authorities mentioned 39 individuals had been arrested in Mexico.


Final week, Mr Trump gave Protection Secretary Jim Mattis express authority to make use of army troops to guard Customs and Border Safety brokers on the border, with deadly pressure if essential. Mattis additionally was empowered to quickly detain migrants within the occasion of violence in opposition to the border patrol.

With the caravan as a backdrop, Mr Trump has used nationwide safety powers to bypass long-standing immigration legislation to disclaim asylum to anybody caught crossing the border illegally. Nonetheless, a courtroom has put these rules on maintain after civil liberties teams sued. On Thanksgiving Day, the President warned of “bedlam, chaos, harm and loss of life” if the courts block his efforts to harden immigration guidelines.

However it’s additionally potential that Sunday’s conflict was borne of accelerating desperation attributable to the hardening of the insurance policies, mentioned Rachel Schmidtke, program affiliate for migration on the Woodrow Wilson Worldwide Centre for Students Mexico Institute.

“This example is now escalating to the purpose of a self-fulfilling prophesy,” she mentioned. “The extra you squeeze, the extra it artificially creates one thing that did not exist, however now could be beginning to change into a disaster.”

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