US

PICTURED: Del Rio camp where 5,000 of 15,000 Haitian migrants remain but 3,000 unaccounted for

Aerial photos of the Haitian migrant in Del Rio along the Texas border taken less than a week apart show the drastic reduction in size. 

As recently as this weekend, there were about 15,000 Haitians in Del Rio hoping to get asylum in the United States after they fled their country that has been torn apart by political turmoil following the Haitian president’s assassination and an earthquake that killed at least 2,200.  

On Thursday, Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas said on CNN that as many as 2,000 Haitians had been released into the US pending hearings – but failed to identify where the remaining 3,000 are.  

The revelation came after the DHS revealed earlier in the day on Thursday that of the 15,000 total; 1,401 were sent back to Haiti on 12 flights, 3,206 remain in custody, and 5,000 are still camped out beneath the International Bridge in Del Rio, Texas. 

Scroll down for video. 

There are now about 5,000, as of Thursday, with about 2,000 released into the U.S. pending hearings. But 3,000 are unaccounted for.

There were about 15,000 Haitian migrants in Del Rio, Texas over the weekend (left0. That number was done to about 5,000 on Thursday (right)

Haitian migrants take shelter along the Del Rio International Bridge at sunset as they await to be processed after crossing the Rio Grande river into the U.S. from Ciudad Acuna in Del Rio, Texas on September 19

Haitian migrants take shelter along the Del Rio International Bridge at sunset as they await to be processed after crossing the Rio Grande river into the U.S. from Ciudad Acuna in Del Rio, Texas on September 19

Mayorkas was asked repeatedly about how many Haitians have been released into the US pending the outcome of their immigration proceedings – and repeatedly declined to provide a specific numerical figure. 

‘We believe it is a very small percentage of the total that assembled in Del Rio Texas, and that will be removed,’ Mayorkas responded, on a day when the US special envoy for Haiti resigned in protest of US policy on deportations.

Rep. Tony Gonzales – a Texas Republican who whose district encompasses Del Rio – ripped Mayorkas and said he was trying to ‘bulls**t’ him. 

‘No, don’t tell me, “Everything’s under control.” It’s not under control,’ Gonzales told the Washington Examiner

‘You can bulls**t somebody else, but you can’t bulls**t me,’ he told The Washington Examiner. ‘It was kind of like, dismissive a little bit, and that’s a problem, especially when you’re talking about national security. Like, there are no second chances. You have to get it right every single time, or it’s game over.’

Migrants seeking asylum in the U.S. cross the Rio Grande river into the U.S. after leaving a makeshift migrant camp

Migrants seeking asylum in the U.S. cross the Rio Grande river into the U.S. after leaving a makeshift migrant camp

Migrants seeking asylum in the U.S. cross the Rio Grande river into the U.S. after leaving makeshift migrant camp in Braulio Fernandez Ecological Park in Ciudad Acuna, Mexico on Thursday

Migrants seeking asylum in the U.S. cross the Rio Grande river into the U.S. after leaving makeshift migrant camp in Braulio Fernandez Ecological Park in Ciudad Acuna, Mexico on Thursday

US Customs and Border Protection (CBP) agents on a boat rescue a Haitian migrant woman from the Rio Grande river at the Mex ico-US border near Ciudad Acuna, Coahuila state, Mexico on Thursday

US Customs and Border Protection (CBP) agents on a boat rescue a Haitian migrant woman from the Rio Grande river at the Mex ico-US border near Ciudad Acuna, Coahuila state, Mexico on Thursday

Authorities expect the camp will be empty in about two days, according to a U.S. official with direct knowledge who was not authorized to speak publicly. 

Homeland Security had planned to ramp up to seven daily flights but flew only three Wednesday and five Thursday because of issues with contractors and mechanical delays, the official told the Associated Press. 

Seven flights were scheduled to Haiti on Friday, six on Saturday and seven on Sunday. 

During Thursday evening’s interview with CNN, interviewer Wolf Blitzer noted that about 15,000 Haitians had gathered and press Mayorkas to account for all 5,000. 

Mayorkas ran through the numbers, and Blitzer followed up with, ‘What about the rest?’

DHS Secretary Mayorkas said Thursday that 10-15 percent of 15,000 Haitians gathered at the bridge in Del Rio, Texas have been released into the country pending their immigration hearings but failed to say where 3,000 unaccounted migrants are

DHS Secretary Mayorkas said Thursday that 10-15 percent of 15,000 Haitians gathered at the bridge in Del Rio, Texas have been released into the country pending their immigration hearings but failed to say where 3,000 unaccounted migrants are

‘If it’s 10 percent, or 15, I don’t have the precise numbers,’ Mayorkas responded. That would put the figure between 1,500 and 2,250 – although Mayorkas avoided specifics.  

‘I assure you it’s a minority of the individuals, for the reasons that I have articulated, and they are placed in immigration enforcement proceedings, where they are able, where they appear before a judge. And if in fact they make a valid claim to remain in the United States, then of course, we honor that and if not they are removed as well,’ he continued. 

Mayorkas also addressed blistering criticism by pointing to Centers for Disease Control regulations under Title 42 – with removals pegged to the coronavirus crisis.  

‘It’s very important to underscore the fact that this is not a matter of immigration policy, but rather this is a matter of public health policy,’ he said. 

‘We are applying the law, pursuant to an order that the Centers for Disease Control, issued in light of the fact that this country and the world is in the midst of a pandemic

‘We are exercising that authority as we are required to do to protect the health and well-being of the migrants themselves, our personnel, local communities and the American public.’

Mayorkas responded to the resignation letter put out by U.S. Special Envoy for Haiti Daniel Foote who left his job on Wednesday.

U.S. Special Envoy for Haiti Daniel Foote resigned on Wednesday, claiming: 'I will not be associated with the United States [sic] inhumane, counterproductive, decision to deport thousands of Haitian refugees and illegal immigrants to Haiti'

U.S. Special Envoy for Haiti Daniel Foote resigned on Wednesday, claiming: ‘I will not be associated with the United States [sic] inhumane, counterproductive, decision to deport thousands of Haitian refugees and illegal immigrants to Haiti’

‘What I what I wish the individual had done is stayed with the cause of addressing the needs of individuals, all throughout the Western Hemisphere and dedicating the resources and the talent and the energies of the men and women in the United States government to rebuild our humanitarian relief capabilities – just as we are doing now in the Biden-Harris administration.’     

The U.S. special envoy for Haiti resigned on Wednesday because he didn’t want to be involved with the ‘inhumane’ deportation of Haitian migrants.

‘I will not be associated with the United States [sic] inhumane, counterproductive, decision to deport thousands of Haitian refugees and illegal immigrants to Haiti, a country where American officials are confined to secure compounds because of the danger posed by armed gangs in control of daily life,’ Ambassador Daniel Foote wrote in his resignation letter, first shared by a PBS reporter on Twitter.

In the letter to Secretary of State Antony Blinken, Foote said another reason for his resignation is that his recommendations to help Haiti have been ‘ignored and dismissed’. 

‘Our policy approach to Haiti remains deeply flawed,’ Foote continued in his letter, ‘and my recommendations have been ignored and dismissed, when not edited to project a narrative different from my own.’ 

A State Department spokesperson accused Foote of ‘mischaracterizing the circumstances of his resignation’ and said some of his ideas were deemed ‘harmful.’

‘[A]ll proposals, including those led by Special Envoy Foote, were fully considered in a rigorous and transparent policy process,’ a statement from the spokesperson reads. ‘Some of those proposals were determined to be harmful to our commitment to the promotion of democracy in Haiti and were rejected during the policy process.’

‘For him to to say that his proposals were ignored is simply false,’ they added.

The statement claims: ‘It is unfortunate that, instead of participating in a solutions-oriented policy process, Special Envoy Foote has both resigned and mischaracterized the circumstances of his resignation.’

Foote blamed Biden for making things worse in Haiti by backing the ‘unelected’ leader after the coup, claiming that ‘picking the winner’ will produce ‘catastrophic results’.

‘Last week, the U.S. and other embassies in Port-au-Prince issued another public statement of support for the unelected, de facto Prime Minister Dr. Ariel Henry as interim leader of Haiti, and have continued to tout his ‘political agreement’ over another broader, earlier accord shepherded by civil society,’ he wrote.

Foote added: ‘The hubris that makes us believe we should pick the winner – again – is impressive.’

‘This cycle of international political interventions in Haiti has consistently produced catastrophic results,’ he said. ‘The negative impact to Haiti will have calamitous consequences not only in Haiti, but in the U.S. and our neighbors in the hemisphere.’

Migrants from Haiti wait in line on Thursday to board buses near the Del Rio International Bridge

Migrants from Haiti wait in line on Thursday to board buses near the Del Rio International Bridge

In Foote's resignation letter, he blamed the Biden administration for exacerbating the issues in Haiti, claiming his recommendations to help the country have been 'ignored and dismissed'

In Foote’s resignation letter, he blamed the Biden administration for exacerbating the issues in Haiti, claiming his recommendations to help the country have been ‘ignored and dismissed’

Reined in: Biden BANS mounted Border Patrol agents over migrant ‘whipping’ controversy

Jen Psaki revealed Thursday that Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas told civil rights leaders that his agency will not continue to allow agents to operate on horseback at the border in Del Rio.

‘I can also convey to you that the secretary also conveyed to civil rights leaders earlier this morning that we would no longer be using horses in Del Rio,’ Psaki said during her daily press briefing. ‘So that is something – a policy change that has been made in response.’

‘We feel those images are horrible and horrific,’ she reiterated from her comments in previous days. ‘There is an investigation the president certainly supports overseen by the Department of Homeland Security, which he has conveyed will happen quickly.’

The images in question emerged earlier this week with Border Patrol agents on horseback apparently using either the horses’ reins or other lariats as whips when chasing after the mostly Haitian migrants.

Agents insist they were not using whips against the migrants, 15,000 of whom set up a makeshift camp underneath and around the Del Rio International Bridge over the last few weeks.

They have reasoned that they were only using the reins on horses or to ward off immigrants – but not to whip them.

This didn’t stop the overwhelming outcry from progressive politicians and civil rights leaders. 

Representative Maxine Waters said on Wednesday that the actions portrayed in the images were ‘worse than slavery’.

The resignation comes as the U.S. migration crisis surged in the past few weeks when up to 15,000 mostly Haitian migrants set up an encampment near the Del Rio International Bridge in Texas.      

Jen Psaki revealed Thursday that Mayorkas told civil rights leaders that his agency will not continue to allow agents to operate on horseback at the border in Del Rio.

‘I can also convey to you that the secretary also conveyed to civil rights leaders earlier this morning that we would no longer be using horses in Del Rio,’ Psaki said during her daily press briefing. ‘So that is something – a policy change that has been made in response.’

‘We feel those images are horrible and horrific,’ she reiterated from her comments in previous days. ‘There is an investigation the president certainly supports overseen by the Department of Homeland Security, which he has conveyed will happen quickly.’

The images in question emerged earlier this week with Border Patrol agents on horseback allegedly using either the horses’ reins or other lariats as whips when chasing after the mostly Haitian migrants.

People are fleeing Haiti and seeking refuge in America after a devastating earthquake and the assassination of their president, which has thrown the country into even more chaos.

Foote said that the deportation back to Haiti will only exacerbate the migration crisis at the southern border.

‘The collapsed state is unable to provide security or basic services, and more refugees will further desperation and crime,’ the now-former special envoy wrote in his resignation letter of Haiti. ‘Surging migration at our borders will only grow as we add to Haiti’s unacceptable misery.’ 

Foote only served in his post for two months after becoming the U.S. Special Envoy for Haiti in July following the assassination of President Jovenel Moïse. In the role, Foote served as a member of President Joe Biden’s delegation to Moïse’s funeral.

Before taking on that role he previously served as Deputy Chief of Mission in Haiti and as the U.S. Ambassador to Zambia under President Donald Trump.

In November 2019, during his tenure in Zambia, Foote said he was ‘horrified’ after a judge in the very conservative society where homosexual acts are illegal sentence two men to 15 years in prison after they were caught having sex in 2017.

He received pushback from Zambia’s President Edgar Lungu for trying to dictate policy and declared him a persona non grata – or an unacceptable or unwelcome person. 

Foote has served with the Department of State since 1998 and has held a litany of roles since then – including in the U.S. consulate in Guadalajara, Mexico; the Bureau of International Narcotics and Law Enforcement Affairs in Colombia; deputy chief of mission in both Port-au-Prince, Haiti and Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic; and chargé d’affaires in the Dominican Republic. 

While many migrants were rounded up and returned to Haiti from the U.S. in the last few days, many began crossing back into Mexico from the border town of Del Rio to avoid deportation to Haiti. 

Images began emerging on Sunday of Border Patrol agents and officers on horseback rounding up migrants and preventing them from returning to the makeshift camp near the Del Rio bridge.

Immediately, the images were slammed as ‘inhumane’ and ‘horrific’ after some accused the agents of using either the reins or a lariat as a whip on the migrants. Images show a rope-like tool being thrown in the direction of some migrants who were running from the officers.

Agents insist they were not using any whips on migrants, while Mayorkas says those pictured with the ropes have been reassigned to administrative duties pending a full investigation into the incident. 

Have 5,000 Haitians been released into US? Official figures show that 9,700 are being processed – but that does include immigrants simply let go from Texas border camp that is thought to have held 15,000 

The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) released figures Thursday tracking the swell of Haitian migrants at the southern border, announcing that 12 flights had sent 1,401 back to Haiti, while 3,206 remained in custody. 

Still, 5,000 remained camped out beneath the International Bridge in Del Rio, Texas.    

Those 3,206 Haitian migrants have either been moved to custody under Customs and Border Protection (CBP) or to other sectors of the border to either be expelled or placed into removal proceedings. 

It’s not clear how many of the other estimated 5,000 who were once at the camp have been released into the US and how many turned back around at the border of their own volition, nor is it clear how many of those in CBP custody will be released and how many will be expelled.  

A peak of 15,000 mostly Haitian migrants camped out under the Del Rio International Bridge in Texas and as of Tuesday, according to DHS Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas, that number dropped to 10,000. 

This year alone, around 1.3 million migrants were apprehended by Customs and Border Protection, but it is still unclear what the fate of these illegal border jumpers is.  

At Psaki’s daily press briefing on Wednesday, Fox News reporter Peter Doocy confronted her on the yet-to-be-released numbers after Mayorkas revealed during a Senate hearing on Tuesday that he did not know the figures.

‘So who else can we ask?’ Doocy asked.

When the press secretary attempted to direct him back to DHS, Doocy replied, ‘He says he doesn’t know.’

‘I am confident that he wanted to have the most up-to-date numbers and we will venture to get you those – I promise, this afternoon,’ Psaki vowed.

In a follow-up question Doocy asked if the issue is that the administration doesn’t know or if they don’t want to reveal figures because ‘a lot more people are being released into the U.S. than are being sent out.’ 

‘That is certainly not the issue,’ Psaki said.

Del Rio Border Patrol repeatedly asked for extra resources in June but were ignored

Border Patrol agents in Del Rio, Texas were so concerned about the escalating situation at the U.S.-Mexico border that they requested additional resources three months ago – but their concerns were not acted on by superiors.

Jon Anfinsen, National Border Patrol Council local president told CNN that the union on June 1 suggested improvements to the system.

Anfinsen said that they wanted agents to be sent to the border with tablets to start the intake process when a large group crosses the river, instead of having the group wait there while space is cleared in the station.

‘This way, we can at least get part of the process finished before they even get to the station instead of wasting that time,’ said the email.

The union followed up on June 3, and also suggested placing a trailer in the area for additional staff, to deal with a predicted surge.

On June 17, the union received a one-sentence response: ‘This is being explored, several other platforms are being considered which are more efficient.’ 

The revelation came as Jen Psaki, the White House spokesman, promised to provide precise data on the number of Haitian arrivals released into the country – yet by 10pm had failed to do so.

Migrants, many of them from Haiti, are pictured wading back and forth between Texas and Mexico on Wednesday. At the weekend an estimated 14,000 migrants were sheltering in Del Rio

Migrants, many of them from Haiti, are pictured wading back and forth between Texas and Mexico on Wednesday. At the weekend an estimated 14,000 migrants were sheltering in Del Rio

A photo from September 22 shows migrants being routed out of a makeshift border camp after being processed by US officials. The White House has pledged to deport most of the migrants back to Haiti under Title 42, but reports indicate that's not the case for some being released

A photo from September 22 shows migrants being routed out of a makeshift border camp after being processed by US officials. The White House has pledged to deport most of the migrants back to Haiti under Title 42, but reports indicate that’s not the case for some being released

Jon Anfinsen, National Border Patrol Council local president, pictured testifying before Congress, said on Wednesday that they had warned back in June about the need for more resources on the U.S.-Mexico border

Jon Anfinsen, National Border Patrol Council local president, pictured testifying before Congress, said on Wednesday that they had warned back in June about the need for more resources on the U.S.-Mexico border

At her daily press briefing on Wednesday, Fox News reporter Peter Doocy confronted Psaki on the numbers – which he said Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas didn’t know. 

‘So who else can we ask?’ Doocy asked.

When Psaki attempted to direct him back to DHS, an incredulous Doocy replied: ‘He says he doesn’t know.’

She replied: ‘I am confident that he wanted to have the most up-to-date numbers and we will venture to get you those – I promise, this afternoon.’

Doocy told Sean Hannity on his 9-10pm show on Fox that Psaki was yet to provide the figures. 

Mayorkas, meanwhile, was at the Capitol on Wednesday for his second day of back-to-back Congressional hearings.

Republican Florida Rep. Carlos Gimenez asked Mayorkas today about how many of the migrants apprehended at the border this year were detained, returned or ‘dispersed.’

‘I would be pleased to provide you with specific data subsequent to this hearing, congressman,’ Mayorkas answered. 

Gimenez accused Mayorkas of being unprepared for the hearing, to which the DHS chief snapped about his long work hours.

‘I work 18 hours a day, OK? So when I returned from yesterday’s hearing, I actually focused on mission. We will get that data, both to the senator who posed it yesterday and to you, congressman, today,’ he said.

It follows on from Tuesday’s hearing before the Senate when Mayorkas still could not provide migrant data.

‘I want some numbers here,’ said Ron Johnson, a Republican senator for Wisconsin. 

‘Of the 1.3 million people that we’ve apprehended, how many people have been returned? How many people are being detained? How many people have been dispersed to all points around America?’  

‘Senator, I would be pleased to provide you with that data — ‘ Mayorkas said before he was cut off.

‘I want them now,’ Johnson demanded. ‘Why don’t you have that information now?’

‘Senator, I do not have that data before me,’ Mayorkas replied.

‘Why not? Why don’t you have that basic information?’ the senator asked.

‘Senator, I want to be accurate,’ Mayorkas said. 

On Wednesday, Johnson wrote to Mayorkas formally requesting the figures.

‘At yesterday’s Senate hearing you failed to answer my questions about basic information on apprehensions at the U.S. border,’ he wrote. 

‘Of the approximately 1.3 million apprehensions, how many people have been returned, how many people have been detained, and how many people have been dispersed into the U.S.?’ 

Johnson said he would like a response within a week. 

The secretary revealed Tuesday that around 5,000 migrants have been removed from the encampment surrounding the Del Rio International Bridge, as the Department of Homeland Security launches a probe into agents on horseback using what appeared to be whips against the mostly Haitian migrants.

‘How many migrants have crossed into the United States in Del Rio over the past week?’ Missouri Republican Senator Josh Hawley asked Mayorkas.

‘So last week, I think the high point was 13,000-15,000 – it is now well below 10,000. We continue to move individuals from Del Rio to other processing centers to facilitate their repatriation,’ the DHS secretary responded.

‘We have increased the number of repatriation flights to Haiti and to other countries,’ Mayorkas added.

It was revealed this week DHS is aiming to send out several deportation flights per day. 

Kamala Harris tells Mayorkas to order Border Patrol to treat migrants with ‘dignity’

Kamala Harris demanded that Border Patrol agents treat the thousands of mostly Haitian migrants gathered in Del Rio, Texas with ‘dignity’ after images emerged of officers on horseback using what appeared to be a whip to wrangle the illegal border hoppers.

‘Yesterday, Vice President Harris spoke to Department of Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas to receive an update about his trip to Del Rio,’ Harris’ chief spokesperson Symone Sanders said in a statement on Wednesday.

‘During that call, the Vice President raised her grave concerns about the mistreatment of Haitian migrants by border patrol agents on horses, and the need of all CBP agents to treat people with dignity, humanely and consistent with our laws and our values.’

However the VP failed to come up with a solution to the migrant crisis and simply heaped blame on overstretched Border Patrol agents. 

Mayorkas also refused to say whether he felt he and the Biden administration bear any responsibility for the influx of Haitian migrants over the last few weeks or the broader border crisis in general. 

The DHS chief visited the border after increasing pressure to do so as images of mostly Haitian migrants in a tent city under the Del Rio bridge spurred accusations the Biden administration was enabling a humanitarian crisis.  

The White House is facing sharp bipartisan condemnation. 

Republicans say Biden administration policies led Haitians to believe they would get asylum. 

Democrats are expressing outrage after images went viral this week of Border Patrol agents on horseback using aggressive tactics against the migrants. 

Many of the 8,600 who remain there have resorted to fashioning makeshift tents using discarded clothing and tree branches in order to provide at least some shelter from the elements.

The heat has been punishing over the last week with temperatures soaring into the high 90s. Families have resorted to bathing in the grimy water of the Rio Grande river to cool off. 

The squalor is more reminiscent of a Developing World country than the land of the American dream, which thousands of migrants have fled to in the hopes of claiming asylum and building a better life.  

Empty water bottles, food containers and other litter is strewn around while mountains of garbage tower up high into the air.

An aerial photo shows the huge piles of garbage from above, which are seen just steps away from the places young children call home. 

In another image, women and young children are seen lying among plastic bottles and an empty Oreo packet, on the ground which is covered in the remnants of trees that have been used to fashion the shelters. 

Another photo shows a Haitian passport in a pile of trash including empty aluminum cans, an old shoe and discarded clothing.  

The cramped conditions have also fueled fears of a COVID-19 outbreak – especially given that the migrants crossing the border are not required to be vaccinated before entering the US.    

Women and young children are seen lying on the ground of the camp among plastic bottles, empty Oreo packets and food containers

Women and young children are seen lying on the ground of the camp among plastic bottles, empty Oreo packets and food containers 

A young girl stands in the place that she currently calls home in a makeshift camp under the Del Rio bridge in Texas

A young girl stands in the place that she currently calls home in a makeshift camp under the Del Rio bridge in Texas 

Almost 15,000 mostly Haitian migrants were camped out under the bridge at the weekend after crossing into the US from Mexico. 

Many fled Haiti after the 2010 earthquake and have been living in South American countries including Brazil and Chile. 

But since these nations have been ravaged by the COVID-19 pandemic, many Haitians have traveled up through South America and Mexico to seek asylum in the US. 

Biden has been blamed after a May proclamation that Haitians in the US would not be deported for 18 months because of instability in their home country, and could apply for documentation to work in the US. 

That only applied to Haitians already in the US at the time, but thousands have since made the trip to the border in a bid to take advantage of it.

Most of them live in Chile and Brazil, having moved there after the devastating 2010 earthquake that killed 200,000. 

Border Patrol agents struggling to process the vast numbers of people quickly enough set up the makeshift camp under the bridge as a temporary home. 

Last week, concerns rose that there would not be enough food, water and basic supplies to provide for the thousands of migrants living at the site. 

Meanwhile, Mexico has begun busing and flying Haitian migrants away from the U.S. border, authorities said Tuesday, signaling a new level of support for the United States. 

Mexico has helped at key moments before. 

It intensified patrols to stop unaccompanied Central American children from reaching the Texas border in 2014, allowed tens of thousands of asylum-seekers to wait in Mexico for hearings in U.S. immigration courts in 2019 and, just last month, began deporting Central American migrants to Guatemala after the Biden administration flew them to southern Mexico.

A migrant walks past a pile of garbage at the camp under the Del Rio bridge in Texas on the US-Mexico border Tuesday night

A migrant walks past a pile of garbage at the camp under the Del Rio bridge in Texas on the US-Mexico border Tuesday night

Marcelo Ebrard, Mexico’s foreign relations secretary, said Tuesday he had spoken with his U.S. counterpart, Secretary of State Antony Blinken, about the Haitians’ situation. 

Ebrard said most of the Haitians already had refugee status in Chile or Brazil and weren’t seeking it in Mexico.

‘What they are asking for is to be allowed to pass freely through Mexico to the United States,’ Ebrard said.

In Haiti, dozens of migrants upset about being deported from the U.S. tried to rush back into a plane that landed Tuesday afternoon in Port-au-Prince as they yelled at authorities. 

A security guard closed the plane door in time as some deportees began throwing rocks and shoes at the plane. 

Several of them lost their belongings in the scuffle as police arrived. 

The group was disembarking from one of three flights scheduled for the day. 

EXCLUSIVE: Thousands of Haitian migrants who flocked to Del Rio were already working and living comfortably as refugees in CHILE and only set off for the US after Biden scrapped Trump-era deportation policy

The secret behind the Haitians who have turned up in Del Rio, Texas is that they didn’t migrate from Haiti at all but from Chile, where they had been granted asylum and were working and living comfortably as refugees. 

The dozens of Chilean identity cards that litter the ground in Ciudad Acuna, just across the Rio Grande from Del Rio, all bear distinctly non-Hispanic names.

There is Prosper Pierre for instance, or Linode Lafleur or Eddyson Jean-Charles. None of the cards carries a name such as Gonzalez or Muñoz or Rojas.

A closer look shows three telling letters – HTI – on the cards where they ask for the bearer’s nationality.

These are the discarded ID cards of Haitians who have turned up in Del Rio by the thousands.

But they haven’t come from Port-au-Prince or Cap-Haïtien or any other city in the poorest nation in the Western Hemisphere. These have mainly come from Santiago, the glittering capital of relatively prosperous Chile. Many had jobs there.

‘As one put it to me, ‘I love Chile, it’s 1,000 times better than Haiti,’ migration expert Todd Bensman of the Center for Immigration Studies told DailyMail.com.

‘But I want to come to the United States, that’s a million times better.’ 

These are the discarded ID cards of the Haitian migrants who have turned up in Del Rio by the thousand after leaving Chile, where they were living as refugees

These are the discarded ID cards of the Haitian migrants who have turned up in Del Rio by the thousand after leaving Chile, where they were living as refugees 

DailyMail.com has learned that the majority of Haitians in Del Rio have actually come from Chile or Brazil, where they have been living as refugees for years, and only set off for the US after Biden opened the borders. The migrants were stopped in Tapachula, Mexico after the Biden administration pressured Mexican authorities not to let them come further north, but were suddenly released on September 12

DailyMail.com has learned that the majority of Haitians in Del Rio have actually come from Chile or Brazil, where they have been living as refugees for years, and only set off for the US after Biden opened the borders. The migrants were stopped in Tapachula, Mexico after the Biden administration pressured Mexican authorities not to let them come further north, but were suddenly released on September 12 

The majority of the Haitian migrants have come from Chile – the wealthiest country in Latin America – and Brazil – the fifth wealthiest – where they have been living in modest comfort in Santiago and São Paulo for the past five or six years.

There are an estimated 150,000 Haitians in Chile and around 125,000 in Brazil – tiny fractions of the two million that live in the United States.

But as US immigration rules became tougher, people desperate to leave the impoverished island began to look to South America as a haven.

Bensman revealed that he has not met any Haitian in Del Rio or Acuna who has come directly from their Caribbean-island homeland.

‘None of these Haitians are from Haiti. None of them. These Haitians are all from Chile and Brazil,’ he said. 

‘When Biden got in, word went out and they decided, we’re coming now. That was the decision point. I’ve interviewed 60 to 70 Haitians over the last year and it’s always the same story – Joe Biden opened the border so we decided we could upgrade our lifestyle. 

‘I interviewed a guy an hour ago who said he was living in Brazil and making good money but he said he heard everyone was getting into America so he came.’

The immigrants traveled up from South America on a path that took them through Colombia, Panama, Costa Rica, Nicaragua, Honduras and Guatemala before landing in a camp across the Mexican border in Tapachula.

There they stayed at the behest of the Biden administration who pressured Mexican authorities not to let them come further north.

That was until Sunday September 12, when Mexico suddenly said they are free to go, said Bensman.

So they headed for the United States. Del Rio was the destination of choice because unlike most other places on the border the local branch of the Los Zetos cartel allows them to cross for free, DailyMail.com has learned.

In most Mexican frontier towns, coyotes charge fees of up to $10,000 per head to smuggle people across the border.

But Del Rio is different, and by last weekend, just a week after they were freed from Tapachula, thousands had camped out under the Del Rio International Bridge – overwhelming the city of just 35,000 people.

Border Patrol agents stand guard on the U.S. side of the bank of the Rio Grand river on Thursday

Border Patrol agents stand guard on the U.S. side of the bank of the Rio Grand river on Thursday

The sight of the squalid camp infuriated local politicians and saw the Biden administration scramble to get extra Border Patrol officers to the area while announcing that all the migrants camped in Del Rio would be deported back to Haiti.

A miles-long steel barrier of state-owned vehicles was put in place on Wednesday to physically keep the immigrants – who had dumped their identity cards at the border so US authorities would not know where their journey had started — from getting away from the border.

Speaking exclusively to DailyMail.com, Bensman – who has spent the past week with the Haitians in Ciudad Acuna – said the absence of smuggling fees made the Del Rio sector the cheapest on the border.

‘The cartel landscape is not the same in Del Rio as it is in Rio Grande Valley and other parts of Arizona and California. It’s different everywhere.

‘In this sector, there’s never really been cartel human smuggling on the same scale – I’m sure you can find a coyote here if you need one.

‘People just cross on their own and make their way into the US without paying anyone. You’ll pay further south in Texas but if you come through here, you pay nothing.

‘It’s cheaper. It’s a lot cheaper. It’s life-changing cheaper.’

Other nationalities have also cottoned on to the lack of cartel activity in the Del Rio sector with Cuban migrant Williams Rodriguez, 28, telling DailyMail.com: ‘We found out [about Del Rio] thanks to several people who were crossing into American lands and they told us what the route was like.

As a result, 15,000 Haitian migrants were encamped under the Del Rio International Bridge by last weekend - overwhelming the tiny Texas city of just 35,000 people

 As a result, 15,000 Haitian migrants were encamped under the Del Rio International Bridge by last weekend – overwhelming the tiny Texas city of just 35,000 people

‘We knew it would be dangerous and we knew we are risking our lives but as the saying goes, he who does not take risks, does not win.’

His friend Luis, 56, added: ‘We were told this was the only place to cross.’

President Joe Biden suspended Trump's border program on his first day of office and the Homeland Security Department ended it in June, drawing an influx of migrants to the border over the past few months

President Joe Biden suspended Trump’s border program on his first day of office and the Homeland Security Department ended it in June, drawing an influx of migrants to the border over the past few months

Bensman, a fellow of National Security Studies at the CIS, also said that many of the Haitians claim Mexico had turned a blind eye to their movements after months of penning them up on their southern border.

Most of the migrants traveled from Tapachula province where they had trapped by roadblocks manned by the Mexican National Guard and had been forced to comply with onerous immigration rules that include getting their papers stamped every two days.

The rules were introduced under the Trump administration – sparking riots among the Haitian and African migrants trapped there. Biden had asked Mexico to keep the measures in place.

‘Remember the Haitians had been causing problems down there because they were so frustrated by the requirements, Bensman explained.

‘My speculation is that the Mexicans felt like this was becoming too much of a problem for them so they simply let them flush north.’

Many of the Haitians say they were allowed to pass as a celebration of El Grito – the September 16 holiday marking the eve of Mexican independence’But I really think it was more of a holiday present for the people of Tapachula who were going to have parades and their celebrations and all that,’ said Bensman.

Footage emerged Monday of scores of mostly Haitian migrants returning to the Mexico side of the Rio Grande River crossing as DHS accelerates deportations

Footage emerged Monday of scores of mostly Haitian migrants returning to the Mexico side of the Rio Grande River crossing as DHS accelerates deportations 

Migrants are guided by Border Patrol agents as they prepare to board a bus from the migrant camp in Del Rio to be taken to other parts of the US for processing

Migrants are guided by Border Patrol agents as they prepare to board a bus from the migrant camp in Del Rio to be taken to other parts of the US for processing 

A bus to transport migrants to other parts of the US for processing is seen by the Del Rio bridge in Texas Tuesday night

A bus to transport migrants to other parts of the US for processing is seen by the Del Rio bridge in Texas Tuesday night

‘I think they just said we’re going to have El Grito without 50,000 angry Haitians here.’ 

The migrant camp under the Del Rio International Bridge is currently being dismantled by Border Patrol, who are busing people out and putting them on deportation flights back to Haiti.

On Tuesday, four flights left the US from Harlingen, Texas, bound for the capital, Port-au-Prince.

Two more – from Laredo and Harlingen – were scheduled for Wednesday, with up to six more due to take off each day until the camp is cleared.

On Sunday, 2,300 migrants crossed back into Mexico after hearing of the flights and made a break for other border towns such as Reynosa where more Haitian refugees are gathering.

Bensman says others plan to wait it out in Ciudad Acuna or are traveling back to Tapachula to dodge deportation.

He said: ‘They have left the camp in Del Rio because they fear they will be deported and it’s credible because all of them have text messages and photos sent from the tarmac in Port-au-Prince

A United States Border Patrol agent on horseback tries to stop a Haitian migrant from entering an encampment on the banks of the Rio Grande

A United States Border Patrol agent on horseback tries to stop a Haitian migrant from entering an encampment on the banks of the Rio Grande

There was even a takeover of an ICE bus by Haitians who realized knew they were being taken to an airport instead of being released into America, he added.

‘Some of the Haitians were nonplussed because their friends in Haiti said don’t believe the Americans, don’t get on the bus. If you get on the bus, they’ll take you to the airport.

‘So all of these people were running away from the buses, the bus loading that’s going on, because the Americans are not telling them where they’re going.

‘That’s why this camp is over. Remember, these people living Chile and Brazil. They told me they would far rather live in Mexico or Chile than be returned to Haiti.

‘It’s the ultimate horror for them. But they take their gamble and sometimes it doesn’t work out.

‘They had two dollars and they figured, well I want five dollars so they put their money on the table and they’ve ended up in debt.’ 

‘Word went out – we’re not going to deport you’: Ted Cruz says migrant crisis grew from 900 in early September to 15,000 just weeks later after Biden CANCELED flights back to Haiti: Hundreds seek asylum in Mexico after crackdown

Ted Cruz has slammed Joe Biden‘s chaotic management of the migrant border crisis, saying thousands of desperate Haitians rushed to Texas after the president canceled deportation flights.

Up to 15,000 migrants have been living in squalid conditions in an impromptu camp that sprang up under a bridge spanning the Rio Grande from the Texas town Del Rio to Mexico‘s Ciudad Acuna. 

The Department of Homeland Security say they have removed 4,600 people in recent days from the site but have not revealed how many have been released into the US.

The White House has also refused to answer when, if ever, Biden has visited the border, even in his previous roles as vice president and senator.

Following the recent crackdown in response to the huge influx, hundreds of migrants have instead headed to Mexico’s refugee agencies and shelters amid the chaotic scenes.  

Speaking to Fox News‘ Laura Ingraham, Cruz, a Republican Texas senator, said: ‘What’s happening in Del Rio really illustrates the cause-and-effect of the Biden border disaster. To really understand it, you have to go back to September 8.

Ted Cruz has slammed Joe Biden's management of the migrant border crisis, saying thousands of Haitians rushed to Texas after the president canceled deportation flights

Ted Cruz has slammed Joe Biden’s management of the migrant border crisis, saying thousands of Haitians rushed to Texas after the president canceled deportation flights

Up to 15,000 migrants have been living in squalid conditions in an impromptu camp that sprang up under a bridge spanning the Rio Grande

Up to 15,000 migrants have been living in squalid conditions in an impromptu camp that sprang up under a bridge spanning the Rio Grande

‘On September 8, under that bridge, there were, on any given day, between 700 and 1,000 illegal immigrants, mostly from Haiti.

‘On September 8 there were roughly 900 Haitians that were scheduled to be on airplanes to go back to Haiti and the Biden administration canceled those flights. 

‘They said, ‘We’re not gonna deport you. You can stay here. You can remain in America.’

‘And what happened was simple. Those 900 Haitians, they pulled out their phones. And they got their phone and they called their families, they called their friends. They texted their family and friends.’

Migrants have been using Facebook, YouTube and WhatsApp to share detailed instructions with friends and family back home on how to cross the border into the US, it was recently revealed.

The White House has refused to answer when, if ever, Biden has visited the border, even in his previous roles as vice president and senator

The White House has refused to answer when, if ever, Biden has visited the border, even in his previous roles as vice president and senator

Cruz continued: ‘You had 700 people on September 8. I was down in Del Rio eight days later on September 16. The day I was there, 700 people had become 10,503. It took eight days for that to happen.

‘Within a couple of days that 10,000 had become 15,000 and it was straight cause-and-effect. The word went out that the Biden administration is not going to enforce the law.

‘And if you’re from Haiti, come to Del Rio because that means you get to stay, and that’s what’s produced this disaster.’ 

Biden initially suspended repatriation flights to Haiti after a magnitude 7.2 earthquake that killed more than 2,000 people and damaged more than 100,000 homes.

But he has since stepped up the deportation blitz in order to curb the number of undocumented migrants flooding into Del Rio as thousands continued to arrive. 

The official line is that Haitians are being expelled from the US back to the crisis-stricken Caribbean nation under a Donald Trump-era rule.

Under Title 42, migrants can be repatriated to their home nations without the possibility of requesting asylum due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Some 523 Haitians have since been deported to their homeland on four flights, with repatriations set to continue on a regular basis, the Department of Homeland Security said.

But thousands of migrants have also been freed into the US on a ‘very, very large scale’ rather than being flown out as the Biden administration promised, according to officials. It’s estimated as many as 5,000 migrants have been allowed in.

Texas Governor Greg Abbott has been forced to use ‘unprecedented’ methods to prevent more from entering his state by creating a ‘steel barrier’ of hundreds of vehicles at the border.  

Migrants exit a Border Patrol bus and prepare to be received by the Val Verde Humanitarian Coalition after crossing the Rio Grande on Wednesday

Migrants exit a Border Patrol bus and prepare to be received by the Val Verde Humanitarian Coalition after crossing the Rio Grande on Wednesday

They are lined up outside Del Rio in Texas, which has seen an influx of 14,600 migrants who crossed the Rio Grande from Mexico into the US. An estimated 8,600 remained in the town of 35,000 people as of Tuesday night, with 1,083 so far deported back to Haiti

They are lined up outside Del Rio in Texas, which has seen an influx of 14,600 migrants who crossed the Rio Grande from Mexico into the US. An estimated 8,600 remained in the town of 35,000 people as of Tuesday night, with 1,083 so far deported back to Haiti

Abbott visited the site on Tuesday and praised DPS and Texas National Guard for creating the barrier by using hundreds of state-owned vehicles, almost all of which appear to be bulky SUVs.  

Unlike Abbott, Biden is yet to witness the scenes of chaos firsthand, where migrants are living in squalid conditions and forced to sleep on the ground under makeshift tents from discarded clothing and tree branches in searing heat.

White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki was pressed on whether Biden had visited the southern border at all in his life but she said she could not provide a date.

The president has frequently visited areas affected by natural disasters but is yet to make a trip to the current crisis emerging in Texas.    

Republican National Committee Chairwoman Ronna McDaniel said: ‘Has Joe Biden ever been to the border? It’s a question that needs to be answered by the president, who is presiding over the most disastrous border crisis in decades.

‘The RNC Research team investigated and has been unable to find a single example of Biden visiting the border in at least a decade, even when he was Obama’s border czar. Biden created a humanitarian crisis at the border and refuses to take responsibility for it.

‘The buck stops with him, and it is long past time for Biden to make the trip, see the devastating impacts of his open border policies for himself, and address the crises his failed policies created.’ 

Filippo Grandi, the head of the UN refugee agency, has warned that US expulsions to such a volatile situation might violate international law.

The chaotic scenes at the border and news of the expulsion flights convinced some Haitian migrants transiting through Mexico that it would be better to petition for legal status there, rather than risk crossing the U.S. border.

‘My thinking is to find a better life, wherever I find it… I never said it had to be in the United States,’ said Wilner Plaisir, a Haitian asylum seeker waiting outside the offices of the Mexican refugee agency COMAR in Mexico City on Wednesday.

John Rourke on Wednesday night told of the distressing scenes he saw in Del Rio, Texas

John Rourke on Wednesday night told of the distressing scenes he saw in Del Rio, Texas

‘If I can find work, I’ll stay here with my family,’ said the construction worker.

Statistics published by COMAR show that 18,883 Haitians applied for asylum in Mexico in the first eight months of this year, the second-highest nationality after Hondurans.

Border Patrol agents were so concerned about the escalating situation at the border that they requested additional resources three months ago – but their concerns were not acted on by superiors.

Jon Anfinsen, National Border Patrol Council local president told CNN that the union on June 1 suggested improvements to the system.

Anfinsen said that they wanted agents to be sent to the border with tablets to start the intake process when a large group crosses the river, instead of having the group wait there while space is cleared in the station.

‘This way, we can at least get part of the process finished before they even get to the station instead of wasting that time,’ said the email.

The union followed up on June 3, and also suggested placing a trailer in the area for additional staff, to deal with a predicted surge.

On June 17, the union received a one-sentence response: ‘This is being explored, several other platforms are being considered which are more efficient.’ 

Meanwhile an Army veteran who organizes annual clean-ups of American cities has told of his shock at the squalid conditions along the border.

John Rourke, founder of the Great American Clean-Up, said that he and his team were taken aback at the scenes.

Alejandro Mayorkas, the Homeland Security Secretary, was in the city on Monday but Rourke told Fox News‘ Tucker Carlson that more needed to be done. 

‘Let me tell you what I saw,’ Rourke said. 

‘I saw people washing babies in the Rio Grande.

‘I saw ladies breastfeeding babies, sleeping in dirt, 107 degrees outside, red ants everywhere, real coyotes – the ones that have four legs walking around.

‘It’s like Naked And Afraid: the southern border edition, out there. 

‘People are literally knocking down trees and setting up lean-tos and teepees and sleeping under those.’

He said he and his colleagues ‘picked up thousands of pounds of garbage along the southern border.’  




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