Border apprehensions drop for second straight month

Border apprehensions drop for second straight month
© Greg Nash

Apprehensions of migrants at the border dropped for the second straight month in July, acting Homeland Security Secretary Kevin McAleenan announced Thursday.

McAleenan said that apprehensions had fallen in the previous two months after hitting a 13-year monthly high in May, though he also noted the situation at the border remained at "crisis levels."

“The situation is improving by every available metric, but, I want to be very clear, that we remain at and beyond crisis levels in illegal crossings even as our initiatives to address irregular flows and mitigate humanitarian conditions are making an impact,” McAleenan said in a statement.

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“Just two months ago, CBP apprehended or encountered 144,000 individuals crossing our border illegally or presenting without documents at Southwest border ports of entry—the highest monthly total in 13 years. In July, that number was 82,000, a 43% decrease from May and a 21% decrease from the June numbers."

McAleenan credited the reduction to new funding for Customs and Border Protection (CBP) and expanded collaboration with Mexico to limit immigration from Central America.

Trump in June threatened to enforce tariffs on all Mexican goods after May's apprehension high.

In response, the Mexican government pledged to curb migration from Central America and avoided the threatened tariffs by deploying its newly created National Guard to detain migrants at the country's southern and northern borders.

CBP data shared by McAleenan shows steep drops in immigrants reaching the border from the Northern Triangle countries of Guatemala, El Salvador and Honduras.

McAleenan is set to give a press conference on the new data later this afternoon.