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CBP officials stopped two men on terror watchlist at U.S.-Mexico border

CBP officials stopped two men on terror watchlist at U.S.-Mexico border
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Customs and Border Protection (CBP) agents have over the past two months stopped two Yemeni men on the FBI's terror watchlist as they attempted to cross into the U.S. from Mexico, the agency said Monday.

In a news release, CBP officials said that the two Yemeni men were arrested roughly two months apart as they attempted to cross into the U.S. in the same general area: a region two to three miles west of the Calexico Port of Entry in California.

One of the men, neither of whom were identified, was discovered to have a cellphone and sim card hidden in his shoe, according to the agency.

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A spokesperson for the agency told NBC News in a statement that such apprehensions are rare, even as the southern border experiences a surge of migrants attempting to enter the U.S.

"While encounters of known and suspected terrorists at our borders are very uncommon, they underscore the importance of the critical work our agents carry out on a daily basis to vet all individuals encountered at our borders," an agency spokesperson told NBC.

The Hill has reached out to CBP for further comment. No recorded terrorist attacks on U.S. soil have been committed by suspects who were thought to have entered the U.S. through the southern border.

“Part of the Border Patrol’s mission states we will protect the country from terrorists,” said Chief Patrol Agent Gregory K. Bovino in a statement accompanying the news release.

“Today, like every other day, our agents did that. These apprehensions at our border illustrates the importance of our mission and how we can never stop being vigilant in our everyday mission to protect this great country," he added.

Updated at 1:37 p.m. on 4/15 to correct the name of CBP.