EXCLUSIVE: Footage taken by Fox News this week shows how Customs and Border Protection (CBP) are releasing busloads of Chinese nationals into the U.S. interior, just as the border is seeing a 900% surge in encounters with migrants from the communist regime.
Two busloads of migrants were released to a non-governmental organization in Brownsville, Texas. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) sources told Fox they are being released with Notices to Appear because there are so many crossing and no more space to house them.
Migrants released with NTAs are given a court hearing for their immigration cases, which can take between four and seven years to resolve.
Officials say the Rio Grande Valley Sector — one of the busiest sectors along the border — has seen a more than 900% increase in Chinese nationals over the same time last year. Across the southern border there were 55 encounters of Chinese nationals in Feb. 2022. Last month, there were 1,368.
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In FY 2021, there were 450 encounters of Chinese nationals overall, in FY 2022, there were 1,176. So far this fiscal year, there have been 4,366 since October.
The apprehension of Chinese nationals gives a glimpse into the global nature of the U.S. border crisis. Officials say last week that there were migrant encounters from 147 different countries this fiscal year.
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Border Patrol Chief Raul Ortiz, meanwhile, testified to lawmakers that DHS does not have operational control of the border, and suggested that a number of sectors were being overwhelmed by the enormous quantity of migrants they were encountering. He also said he disagreed with President Biden’s decision to stop border wall construction.
There were more than 1.7 million encounters in FY 2021, and more than 2.3 million in FY 2022. FY 2023 has been on track to outpace those numbers, but there has been a decrease in numbers through January and February.
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The Biden administration has linked that decrease to measures introduced in January that include a humanitarian parole program and an expansion of Title 42 expulsions. It is also proposing a rule that would make migrants automatically ineligible for asylum if they had entered illegally and if they have crossed through another country without claiming asylum.
That rule will be implemented for the end of Title 42 — a public health order that has been used to expel migrants due to the COVID-19 pandemic. The order will end along with the end of the public health emergency on May 11.
Officials have warned about a potential surge in migration at the border once the order drops, as well as an increase in the numbers processed into the United States.
Republicans have blamed the administration for rolling back Trump-era border protections and releasing more migrants into the interior, saying those policies have encouraged more migrants. That criticism was on display on Tuesday in reaction to Fox News’ reporting.
“Now the Biden Admin is releasing Chinese illegals who have come across the southern border. They’re not even trying to enforce the law,” Sen. Josh Hawley, R-Mo., tweeted.
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The administration, meanwhile, has blamed Republicans for failing to provide additional funding and for voting against immigration reform measures it introduce on day one of the administration. It took aim specifically at a GOP budget proposal on Monday, which it called a “five-alarm fire” and said would cut staffing for CBP.