Panama's foreign minister said they caught 52 Al-Qaeda suspects heading to the United States as Customs and Border Patrol data reveal that around 1.7 million people have crossed the southern border this year.
CBN News said the United States Customs and Border Patrol data ending September 2021 showed illegal crossings have increased tremendously this year when President Joe Biden took office. Of the 1.7 million CBP data, said to be the highest in record since 1986, there were 200,000 migrants arrested in July and August. While there were 540,000 average border arrests between the fiscal years 2012 to 2020.
Accordingly, this year's data proved to be thrice the average of the 2012-2020 data. A total of 61% were expelled or returned to their countries under Title 42 authority out of the 2021 1.7 million CBP data.
In line with such arrests, Texas Representative Tony Gonzales disclosed that Panama's foreign minister told him they were able to arrest terrorists on their way to the United States. Gonzales shared the information to Republican National Committee Chairwoman Ronna McDaniel.
"She visits with me. She sits down, she goes, 'There are over 100,000 migrants coming through Panama on their way to the U.S.,' And we started talking about that, but I asked her one specific question. 'Have you caught anybody on the terrorist watch list? She goes, 'Funny you ask that Tony because in Panama we do biometrics and we have apprehended 52 people that are associated with al Qaeda'," CBN News quoted Gonzales in narrating to McDaniel.
In June, Texas Governor Greg Abbott issued a disaster declaration to the border crisis, which allowed the provision of "more resources and strategies to combat the ongoing influx of unlawful immigrants." Abbott then hosted in the same month a Border Security Summit to map out a "comprehensive border security plan to crack down on unlawful border crossings."
Abbott similarly announced in June the construction of the border wall and, in September, launched a campaign for its funding--just in time when the border crisis escalated as more than 10,000 Haitians sought shelter at the Texas bridge in Del Rio. The fundraising campaign for the Texas border wall has reached $54,352,215 as of October 8, 2021.
According to Abbott, President Joe Biden's "open-border policies have led to a humanitarian crisis at our southern border as record levels of illegal immigrants, drugs, and contraband pour into Texas." Abbott also said, in an interview with Fox News, that Biden "completely abandoned" Texans, ranchers, and "all the people who live on the border."
Abbott pointed out that securing the border is really Biden's responsibility but he has gone ahead in acting on the situation the past months, which included signing the border security funding of $1.8 billion into law, House Bill 9.
"While securing the border is the federal government's responsibility, Texas will not sit idly by as this crisis grows. Texas is responding with the most robust and comprehensive border plan the nation has ever seen," Abbott said in a statement.
Early this month, Abbott was joined by eight other governors to arrive at a 10-point plan to secure the southern border and keep "Americans safe." The said governors were Arizona's Doug Ducey, Georgia's Brian Kemp, Idaho's Brad Little, Iowa's Kim Reynolds, Montana's Greg Gianforte, Nebraska's Pete Ricketts, Ohio's Mike DeWine, Oklahoma's Kevin Stitt, and Wyoming's Mark Gordon.
Part of the 10-point plan includes fully reinstating the Migrant Protection Protocols, "resume the deportation of all criminals," and "continue Title 42 public health restrictions."