SAN DIEGO (Border Report) — Migrant advocates are asking the Mexican government to add patrols in the mountains east of Tijuana to protect migrants from smugglers and to prevent them from crossing the border illegally.
Soraya Vazquez, assistant director of Al Otro Lado, said hundreds of migrants are entering the U.S. daily via several mountain passes south of the town of Jacumba, California, about 70 miles east of the Tijuna-San Diego region.
“There’s an average of 300 to 400 people every day of all nationalities who manage to cross the border and turn themselves into U.S. Customs and Border Protection,” she said. “CBP lets them stay in fields out in the open out in the elements, but they’re also exposed to organized crime and human traffickers.”
Vazquez stated she worries even more about the children and seniors who are left out in the open for days at a time.
“They cross the border, then the United States says it doesn’t have space to process them and leaves them there, it’s getting cold out at night.”
She is also concerned many of the migrants who are illegally crossing may not qualify for humanitarian parole and could be returned to Mexico almost immediately after being processed.
“When they try to begin the asylum process, they’re not going to qualify because they entered unlawfully,” she said. “This is something many migrants don’t understand or refuse to consider.”