Published: Tue, November 06, 2018
Worldwide | By Jermaine Blake

USA troops seen setting up barbed wire near Mexico border

USA troops seen setting up barbed wire near Mexico border

The Trump administration discussed using the us military to build facilities to house detained migrants as part of its new mission on the Mexican border but the idea was dropped after the Pentagon expressed doubts about it, USA officials said.

Around 4,800 USA soldiers were deployed on Monday (Nov 5) to the border with Mexico, the Pentagon announced, saying it could not give a price tag for the operation Democrats decry as political manoeuvring from President Donald Trump.

President Donald Trump, who has repeatedly characterized the approaching caravans - without evidence - as an "invasion", has warned the migrants that the military will be waiting for them when they arrive. The supposed request was made at the time when a migrant caravan of mostly Central American asylum-seekers are heading to the U.S. in the hope to cross into the country.

"We're going to have tents".

The president also indicated last week that the number of troops deployed for this cause could reach 15,000, although the Pentagon put the number at 7,000 for now.

Asked about the proposal on Monday, the Pentagon declined comment on internal administration deliberations but added that it did not receive a request from DHS to build facilities to house migrant families. They said they won't be going out on patrol.

On Thursday, Trump claimed the military is putting up thousands of tents to hold migrants, but officials said there are no plans as of now to build tents. There are reports that this deployment could cost upwards of $200 million.

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The troops heading for the border areas of Texas, Arizona and California are a small fraction of the nation's roughly 1.3 million active-duty service members.

Manning said only military police would carry weapons and stressed that there were no plans for USA troops to come in contact with protesters or migrants.

In 2010, Obama ordered the deployment of up to 1,200 National Guard to the US-Mexico border as part of Operation Phalanx.

The president has also indicated that United States troops may open fire on migrants who become aggressive.

However, Trump's effort has been embraced by Republicans running in the elections, in which illegal immigration is a top issue. Their mission is to keep caravans of Central Americans out.

Some people living in the area are calling the move a midterm election stunt.

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