Mattis: Pentagon preparing temporary migrant camps on two bases

Mattis: Pentagon preparing temporary migrant camps on two bases
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The Pentagon is preparing temporary shelters for migrants on two military bases, Defense Secretary James MattisJames Norman MattisGOP reasserts NATO support after report on Trump’s wavering Overnight Defense: Trump faces blowback over report he discussed leaving NATO | Pentagon extends mission on border | Senate advances measure bucking Trump on Russia sanctions Trump suggested withdrawing US from NATO: report MORE told reporters on Sunday.

“The details are being worked out ... about exactly how much capacity they need at the two bases, what other kinds of facilities they need built,” Mattis said on board a flight to Alaska, according to Reuters.


The defense secretary did not provide other details, including the names of the two bases under consideration, the news agency reported.

His comments come after widespread backlash over the Trump administration's "zero tolerance" immigration policy, which saw some 2,000 migrant children separated from their families after being detained at the border.

In an effort to quell the controversy, President TrumpDonald John TrumpVeterans groups demand end to shutdown: 'Get your act together' Brown launches tour in four early nominating states amid 2020 consideration Pence on border wall: Trump won't be ‘deterred’ by Dem ‘obstruction’ MORE last week signed an executive order ending the family separations. House Republicans are also reportedly preparing to vote on a narrow immigration bill that would allow detained children to remain with their parents for longer than 20 days.

Mattis's remarks follow a report that the Pentagon has been asked about the possibility of housing as many as 20,000 unaccompanied migrant children on military bases as soon as next month.

The defense secretary said the military would comply if asked by the White House to help in providing shelter to detained immigrants. However, the Pentagon chief on Sunday did not say if the temporary shelters would specifically house minors.