Texas Gov. Greg Abbott (R) has ordered several points of entry at the border shut down after thousands of illegal aliens encamped under a bridge while awaiting refugee processing.
“The sheer negligence of the Biden administration to do their job and secure the border is appalling,” read the emergency statement from Abbott.
U.S. Customs and Border Protection said that the shaded area under the International Bridge in Del Rio, Texas, was being used a temporary staging site in order to “prevent injuries from heat-related illness.”
Some estimates of the encampment put the number of migrants at about 4,000 on Wednesday, but officials told Fox News the group could have swelled to as many as 8,200 on Thursday.
“I have directed the Department of Public Safety and the Texas National Guard to surge personnel and vehicles to shut down six points of entry along the southern border to stop these caravans from overrunning our state,” Abbott continued.
“The border crisis is so dire that the U.S. Customs and Border Protection is requesting our help as their agents are overwhelmed by the chaos,” Abbott added. “Unlike President Biden, the State of Texas remains committed to securing our border and protecting Americans.”
Drone video from Fox News showed border agents trying to attend to the thousands of migrants.
Telemundo reported that many of the migrants were from Haiti and that they said they were trying to escape violence, povertym and natural disasters in their home countries. Some reported being abused and extorted for money by Mexican law enforcement officials.
Del Rio Mayor Bruno Lozano said in a video on Facebook that there were as many as 20,000 other migrants on the way to the city.
Rep. Tony Gonzales (R-Texas) told Fox News the situation in Del Rio was “gut-wrenching” and dangerous.
“The sheer amount of people, it’s like getting hit by a 2×4,” he said. “You think you’re in a third-world country, and this is the United States, this is Del Rio Texas, and there is literally no border at all — it’s just been muddied over.”
Gonzales blamed the Biden administration for removing restrictions on applications for refugee status set by the former Trump administration. He said that Haitian migrants took this as a sign to go to the U.S. to seek entry.