Internal documents obtained by News Nation reveal that the vast majority of illegal immigrants are not coming to the United States due to political persecution, but rather economic hardship.
Out of the hundreds of migrants that US Customs and Border Patrol interviewed alongside Panamanian Immigration authorities, there was not one single migrant that stated they feared political persecution, which is the main factor to be granted asylum in the United States. The main "pull factor" identified was economic hardship, according to the documents.
Additionally, the majority of illegal immigrants interviewed stated that they already had work lined up in the US.
The Darien Gap, which is considered the most dangerous in the world due to its rough jungle terrain and being run by a lawless, indigenous cartel, is the main site where illegal immigrants gather in Central America before making their way to the US. Migrants coming from South America are forced to pass through the Panamanian jungle, and many end up dying on their journey.
The revelations are insightful as the proposed Senate border bill paints all migrants as asylum seekers but the internal documents show that the Department of Homeland Security knows this not to be true.
Border Patrol officials have encountered more than one million illegal immigrants since the new fiscal year began on October 1, according to Fox News.
Compared to the same time last year, when there were 908,000 encounters in the US, the number is around 100,000 higher. A source in the CBP told the network that this is the earliest that the United States has ever achieved the one million encounter milestone.
Additionally, the number of Chinese migrants crossing the US border is increasing. Last year, Chinese illegal immigrants constituted the most rapidly expanding category of border crossers; this trend is expected to continue in fiscal year 2024.
Since October, the CBP has encountered nearly 20,000 Chinese migrants, compared to the 37,000 they encountered last year. This fiscal year, according to the CBP source, approximately 150 Chinese migrants have been caught illegally entering the US daily.
This comes as Congress struggled to reach negotiations on a new border security bill which the two chambers have been fighting over for the past several months. The Senate's border supplementary bill was declared "dead on arrival" in the House this week. The bill included $118 billion in foreign aid in return for only a little more than $20 billion for US border security.
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