Los Angeles, United States, Oct 16 (EFE). – A group of 120 organizations on Monday asked the President of the United States, Joe Biden, to put an end to the recently ordered work to reinforce the border wall with Mexico in areas where it affects vulnerable communities and wildlife.
On October 4, it was announced that the Secretary of Homeland Security, Alejandro Mayorkas, had given the go-ahead for the construction of barriers in several areas of the Rio Grande Valley to “prevent the illegal entry” of migrants into the US.
In a letter led by the Center for Biological Diversity, the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU), and the Sierra Club, the 120 groups stated that Mayorkas’ order violates at least 26 federal laws in Starr County, Texas, including public health, cultural, and environmental protections.
The resumption of construction in the area provoked a wave of protests, including from the Mexican government, to which Mayorkas responded that the Biden administration believes that the border wall is “not the appropriate response” to migration, and he reiterated that this “position has never changed.”
However, he acknowledged that the US is forced to continue with the barrier construction project because it was approved by Congress in 2019, during the Donald Trump administration (2017-2021), and the funds cannot be diverted.
In the document authorizing the construction, the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) noted that between October 2022 and August 2023, US authorities detained more than 245,000 people trying to cross the border with Mexico in this area.
The organizations warned in the letter that this position of the Biden administration “suggests serious confusion,” which is why they urged a rollback of the legal exemptions that have allowed the construction and new plans to extend the barrier. EFE