Migrant encounters at southern border hit new February record high


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The number of migrant encounters at the southern border for February hit a new high for the month this year, Customs and Border Protection (CBP) figures released on Friday reveal, reversing a sharp drop in numbers in January.

There were 189,922 migrant encounters along the border in February. That’s higher than the 156,000 in the same month in 2023. The highest it had been for February was in 2022 when numbers reached 166,010.

Despite the record-high numbers overall, the number of illegal migrant encounters between ports of entry by Border Patrol is lower than in February 2022, meaning the new high is explained in part by large numbers coming to the ports of entry. 

CBP processed more than 42,000 people through appointments at ports of entry.

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Migrants in San Diego sector

Migrants are encountered by Border Patrol in the San Diego sector Feb. 17. (Fox News)

Numbers had dropped from a record 302,000 in December to a relatively low 176,204 in January but had not continued to decline in February.

In a statement, acting CBP Commissioner Troy Miller said the agency is working with domestic and foreign partners to enhance enforcement and is “aggressively targeting unscrupulous human smugglers and swiftly applying consequences against those who cross the border illegally and have no legal basis to remain in the United States.”

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He pointed to increases in drugs seized by agents, including 294% more meth than in January. DHS also said it has now removed or returned nearly 600,000 individuals since May.

This is a breaking story; check back for updates. 



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