US fires tear gas into Mexico as migrants attempt to cross border into San Diego

US fires tear gas into Mexico as migrants attempt to cross border into San Diego

Breaking News

U.S. border authorities fired tear gas into Mexico on Monday night when a group of roughly 150 migrants attempted to illegally cross the border into San Diego.

Interested in Immigration?

Add Immigration as an interest to stay up to date on the latest Immigration news, video, and analysis from ABC News.

Immigration
Add Interest

Customs and Border Protection said the non-lethal measures were not aimed at those who were actively climbing the fence, but at people who were throwing rocks south of the borderline.

Migrants run as tear gas is thrown by U.S. Border Protection officers to the Mexican side of the border fence after they climbed the fence to get to San Diego, Calif., from Tijuana, Mexico, Tuesday, Jan. 1, 2019. Discouraged by the long wait to applyThe Associated Press
Migrants run as tear gas is thrown by U.S. Border Protection officers to the Mexican side of the border fence after they climbed the fence to get to San Diego, Calif., from Tijuana, Mexico, Tuesday, Jan. 1, 2019. Discouraged by the long wait to apply

“These countermeasures successfully suppressed the rock throwers causing them to flee the area,” CBP said in a statement.

A Homeland Security spokesperson described the group as “a violent mob.”

(MORE: Can they do that? Trump administration fires tear gas, starts wait list for migrants seeking asylum)

Multiple children were among the migrants attempting to cross, and officers reported seeing some of them lift “toddler-sized children up and over the concertina wire.”

Border Patrol also used smoke devices and pepper spray on the migrants. Twenty-five people were arrested, including two teenagers who attempted to cross, according to CBP. They were not injured.

Migrants run as tear gas is thrown by U.S. Border Protection officers to the Mexican side of the border fence after they climbed the fence to get to San Diego, Calif., from Tijuana, Mexico, Tuesday, Jan. 1, 2019. Discouraged by the long wait to applyThe Associated Press
Migrants run as tear gas is thrown by U.S. Border Protection officers to the Mexican side of the border fence after they climbed the fence to get to San Diego, Calif., from Tijuana, Mexico, Tuesday, Jan. 1, 2019. Discouraged by the long wait to apply

“Agents observed several individuals throwing rocks who appeared to have prepared themselves for the assault by applying lotion to their faces to counter the effects of chemical munitions,” Rodney Scott, chief patrol agent of the U.S. Border Patrol’s San Diego sector, said in a statement posted on Instagram. “Several arrests were made, all individuals from central America. No injuries were sustained by either the agents or individuals arrested.”

The incident is undergoing an internal review, a standard practice when agents use nonlethal deterrents, according to CBP guidelines.

Border Patrol came under scrutiny in December for using tear gas when a large group of migrants previously attempted to cross into San Diego.

PHOTO: Migrants run as tear gas is thrown by U.S. Border Protection officers to the Mexican side of the border fence after they climbed the fence to get to San Diego, Calif., from Tijuana, Mexico, Tuesday, Jan. 1, 2019.AP
Migrants run as tear gas is thrown by U.S. Border Protection officers to the Mexican side of the border fence after they climbed the fence to get to San Diego, Calif., from Tijuana, Mexico, Tuesday, Jan. 1, 2019.

Although CBP policy says agents are not allowed to use tear gas on pregnant women and children, several women and children were among the group targeted by the gas used at the time.

(MORE: Migrant mother seen fleeing tear gas with children: ‘I felt I was going to die’)

Border Patrol arrested 42 migrants after the November incident, but criminal charges were not filed.

The migrants arrested during Monday night’s incident will likely face deportation proceedings, but will also have the opportunity to apply for asylum.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *