As the U.S.-Mexico border is facing its worst nightmare, one woman drowned and 13 Mexican migrants were pulled from the water after they attempted to swim around the border fence from Tijuana to San Diego.
On October 29, U.S. Border Patrol agents received a notification of a group of possibly 70 people attempting to illegally swim across the international boundary from Tijuana into the U.S. at Border Field State Park.
Border Tragedy Continues
An agent in the area reported several individuals in the water, and one responding agent came across a single, unresponsive woman later believed to be from the same group of swimmers. The agents performed CPR themselves and brought in a San Diego Fire-Rescue emergency medical services team, but the woman was pronounced dead at the scene, U.S. Customs and Border Protection said in a statement. The San Diego Medical Examiner took custody of the body.
Border Patrol agents took a total of 36 adult Mexican nationals into custody who had swam around the border barrier, 25 men and 11 women, including 13 people the U.S. Coast Guard rescued from the water. All 36 persons were taken into custody and transported to a nearby Border Patrol station for processing.
"This is yet another example of the ruthless tactics smuggling organizations use to bolster their power and profits," said Chief Patrol Agent Aaron Heitke of the Border Patrol's San Diego Sector.
557 Migrant Deaths Recorded on Mexico Border in 2021 Fiscal Year
The US Border Patrol recorded more migrant deaths on the country's southern border in the fiscal year 2021 than in any prior year on record, CNN reported citing data shared by the agency. According to the media outlet, there were around 557 Southwest border deaths during the fiscal year, which ended on 30 September. The numbers are up from 254 deaths in the fiscal year 2020 and 300 deaths in 2019, marking a sharp increase.
According to the Border Patrol agency, heat exposure is one of the reasons for a majority of migrant border deaths. Apart from heat exposure, the agency said that several additional factors like more people crossing the border and an increased effort by the agency to work with the nation's law enforcement partners to identify and document cases can also led to an increase in recorded deaths.
Texas is Building Its Own Border Wall
The constant influx of migrants on the Southwest border is posing a growing humanitarian challenge for U.S. President Joe Biden. The crisis has prompted some state governors to take concrete actions to fix the security situation.
Texas Governor Greg Abbott informed that officials at the border with Mexico are laying down "miles of razor wire" amid reports of an approaching caravan of migrants, reported Newsweek.
He also said Texas is "building its own border wall" to secure the United States-Mexico border from illegal immigration. The construction work will begin within the next two months.