Undocumented migrants in South El Paso have voluntarily surrendered themselves to authorities in a “targeted enforcement” operation conducted by Customs and Border Protection (CBP).
The operation took place on Tuesday, just two days before the expected end of Title 42, a pandemic-era regulation used to return migrants to their home countries.
Migrants were seen lined up, ready to surrender to CBP agents, as captured by news crews on the scene.
According to reports, the operation was initiated after migrants received a paper from CBP officers, inquiring if they had undergone processing.
Some of the migrants expressed their desire to pursue legal immigration channels, stating, “Well, we want to do this the legal way with immigration, so we don’t have to keep hiding.”
Officials are urging migrants who did not cross the border illegally to surrender themselves to the nearest Border Patrol station, where they will be placed into the appropriate processing procedures.
Additional migrants were observed waiting to undergo the processing protocols.
The enforcement operation comes at a critical time, with Title 42 set to conclude in just a couple of days.
This regulation has been used throughout the pandemic to limit the entry of migrants into the United States as a measure to control the spread of COVID-19.
Its expiration raises questions about the future handling of undocumented migrants and the potential impact on border control and immigration policies.
While the news release announcing the operation did not specify the exact reasons behind the targeted enforcement action, it appears to be a strategic move by CBP to address the situation before the anticipated end of Title 42.
The voluntary surrender of migrants demonstrates their willingness to cooperate with authorities and navigate the immigration process legally.
As the operation unfolds, the fate of these undocumented migrants remains uncertain.
It remains to be seen how the conclusion of Title 42 will shape immigration policies and procedures moving forward, as well as the ongoing efforts to address the complex issue of unauthorized migration at the southern border.