The busiest border checkpoint on the U.S.-Mexico border, San Ysidro Port of Entry, was closed to crossings Sunday, officials with U.S. Customs and Border Protection announced amid reports of Central American migrants attempting to breach the border.
The border checkpoint was closed to all traffic by 11:40 a.m. local time as migrants protested in an effort to plead the U.S to move faster in processing asylum requests, according to The Associated Press.
Lanes have reopened as of 5:15 p.m. local time.
Here are the latest updates:
Update 6:50 a.m. EST Nov. 26: President Donald Trump took to Twitter early Monday, threatening to permanently close the border to prevent migrants from coming into the country.
“Mexico should move the flag waving Migrants, many of whom are stone cold criminals, back to their countries,” Trump tweeted. “Do it by plane, do it by bus, do it anyway you want, but they are NOT coming into the U.S.A. We will close the Border permanently if need be. Congress, fund the WALL!”
Update 8:50 p.m. EST Nov. 25: Lanes have reopened at the San Ysidro port of entry, according to US Customs & Border Protection San Diego.
Update 7:50 p.m. EST Nov. 25: The Associated Press reported that, according to the Mexican Interior Ministry, nearly 500 migrants who rushed the the border with the U.S. will be deported. The Mexican Interior Ministry also said it would reinforce the boarder.
Update 6:30 p.m. EST Nov. 25: U.S. Secretary of Homeland Security Kirstjen Nielsen cited lawlessness and public safety as the cause of the shut down of San Ysidro Port of Entry.
“This AM, @CBP was forced to close the #SanYsidro POE to ensure public safety in response to a large # of migrants seeking to illegally enter the US. They attempted to breach legacy fence infrastructure along the border and sought to harm CBP personnel by throwing projectiles @ them,” Nielsen said on Twitter Sunday evening.
“@DHS will not tolerate this type of lawlessness & will not hesitate to shut down POEs for security reasons. We'll seek to prosecute to the fullest extent of the law anyone who destroys federal property, endangers our frontline operators, or violates our sovereignty.”
Update 5:15 p.m. EST Nov. 25: The Associated Press reported that U.S. agents shot tear gas at migrants who tired to beach the fence separating the U.S. and Mexico in Tijuana, Mexico.
“We ran, but when you run the gas asphyxiates you more,” Honduran migrant Ana Zuniga, 23, told the AP. She was holding her 3-year-old daughter in the fray.
The AP reported children were screaming and coughing as tear gas enveloped the area.
Update 4:25 p.m. EST Nov. 25: Mexican police cracked down on a protest by Central American migrants who gathered in Tijuana at the U.S.-Mexico border to apply for asylum, Reuters reported.
Protests on the border have become daily affairs, according to Reuters.
President Donald Trump said Saturday that migrants would be made to stay in Mexico while awaiting the results of asylum claims, although Mexican authorities denied the report.
Update 3:50 p.m. EST Nov. 25: AFP reported that several people attempted to cross the dry riverbed of the Tijuana River on Sunday.
The Associated Press reported that authorities on the U.S. side of the border launched tear gas into Mexico in an apparent attempt to disperse the crowd.
Original report: Officials announced the closure, which applies to both vehicle and pedestrian traffic at the San Ysidro Point of Entry in California, around 11:30 a.m. local time.
The Associated Press reported Sunday that several hundred migrants traveling from Central America have marched toward the crossing between San Ysidro, just south of San Diego, and Tijuana, Mexico, in an effort to pressure American officials into hearing their asylum claims.
Agents at the San Ysidro Port of Entry process fewer than 100 asylum petitions a day, the AP reported, though more than 5,000 migrants were camped in Tijuana in recent days in hopes of making it to America.
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