As illegal immigration continues to slam American cities near the Mexican border, one Arizona town in particular is feeling the heat with a ghastly 2,404.9% increase in migrants during the first two months of fiscal year 2022—which started in October—compared to the same period last year. Situated around 10 miles from Mexico on the banks of the Colorado River, Yuma, in southwestern Arizona, began to see an unprecedented influx of illegal aliens in fiscal year 2021 along with the nation’s other Border Patrol sectors. In 2021 eight of the nine crossing stations along the southern border saw triple-digit percentage increases in illegal immigrants over the previous year, according to government figures. Yuma took the prize with an unbelievable 1,200.4% hike in apprehensions at the end of the fiscal year in September.
As the new year gets underway, the numbers are growing at a disturbing rate for the municipality with a population of about 96,000. The city’s mayor recently declared a local emergency due to the humanitarian and border crisis caused by the unprecedented surge of migrants entering the area. During a five-day period in early December, more than 6,000 illegal immigrants crossed from Mexico through the Yuma area, according to U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) figures cited in the mayor’s declaration. “Migrants are traveling through Yuma during a time of great uncertainty about the COVID-19 virus, and without provisions for adequate food, water, shelter, transportation and medical care,” a statement announcing the order reads. “This surge of migrants has and will continue to strain the ability of medical staff and local hospital resources to provide essential and necessary medical care.” In the statement Yuma Mayor Douglas Nicholls says the change in the movement of migrants greatly impacts his community. That includes the area’s agriculture industry because migrants are passing on foot through active agriculture fields. “The encroachment on active production fields results in food safety concerns and the destruction of crops, which leads to significant economic loss and property damage in the farming community, loss of agriculture-related jobs, and a threat to the nation’s food security,” the city emergency declaration states.
Yuma is hardly the only Border Patrol sector to start the year with a bang, the government figures show. Around 980 miles away, the Del Rio station in Texas has seen a 237.8% surge in illegal immigrants over the same period last year. Two other Texas sectors—Rio Grande Valley and Big Bend—also report alarming spikes at 166.6% and 118.7% respectively. Other crossings in Texas, California and Arizona have also seen major increases in illegal immigrants in the first two months of fiscal year 2022. San Diego reports an 89.1% boost, Tucson 71.9%, and El Paso 68.5%. Each of the crossings finished fiscal year 2021 with unprecedented gains in apprehensions. Del Rio led the pack with a 542.7% surge while Rio Grande Valley had a 508.7% increase. Big Bend and EL Paso recorded apprehension gains of 331.9% and 256.5% respectively in fiscal year 2021. Most of the illegal aliens, 608,000, arrested by the U.S. in 2021 came from Mexico followed by the Central American nations of Honduras (309,000), Guatemala (279,000) and El Salvador (96,000).
Nevertheless, federal agents along the Mexican border are encountering a lot more migrants from nations outside of Latin America, including those with terrorist ties. In fact, thousands of illegal immigrants from Africa and the Middle East were arrested in the first month of this fiscal year, indicating an alarming trend among migrants entering the country through the porous southern border. In October alone, the first month of fiscal year 2022, the Border Patrol’s Del Rio Sector in Texas reported 28,111 illegal aliens from more than 50 countries. They include Syria, Lebanon, Eritrea, Uzbekistan, and Tajikistan, a central Asian nation that borders Afghanistan, which is controlled by the Taliban after the abrupt exit of U.S. troops last year. In November, the station apprehended six nationals of Eritrea, a northeast African country on the Red Sea coast, two Syrian males, a man from Lebanon, home of the terrorist group Hezbollah, two men from Tajikistan as well as a man from Uzbekistan. “We encounter individuals from all over the world attempting to illegally enter our country,” Del Rio Sector Chief Patrol Agent Jason D. Ownes said in late November. “Our agents are focused and work hard to ensure that we detect, arrest, and identify anyone that enters our country in order to maintain safety of our communities.”
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