U.S. authorities have made more than 2 million immigration arrests along the southern border during the past 11 months, marking the first time annual enforcement statistics have exceeded that threshold, according to figures provided by senior Biden administration officials Monday.
In August, U.S. Customs and Border Protection detained more than 203,000 migrants were detained crossing into the United States from Mexico, the latest figures show, putting authorities on pace to tally nearly 2.3 million arrests during the government’s 2022 fiscal year, which ends Sept. 30. The total, which includes some people arrested more than once, far exceeds last year’s record 1.73 million arrests.
This year’s historic migration wave has been driven by extra large numbers of border-crossers from outside Mexico and Central America, the two largest traditional sources of illegal entries. In recent months, soaring numbers of Venezuelan, Nicaraguan and Cuban asylum seekers have been taken into custody, crossing primarily through remote areas near Yuma, Arizona and the Del Rio, Texas.
“Failing communist regimes in Venezuela, Nicaragua, and Cuba are driving a new wave of migration across the Western Hemisphere, including the recent increase in encounters at the southwest U.S. border,” Customs and Border Protection Commissioner Chris Magnus, said in a statement.
The Republican governors of Texas and Arizona have sent more than 10,000 migrants on buses to Washington, New York City and other northern destinations to put pressure on Democrats by straining relief services in their jurisdictions. Last week, Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis (R) shipped a planeload of Venezuelans to Martha’s Vineyard, Massachusetts.