The number of undocumented immigrant minors taken into custody after being caught trying to illegally cross the border into the United States has fallen for the second month in a row. 3,129 unaccompanied immigrant minors were detained by agents at the border between the US and Mexico in August, according to the Customs and Border Protection agency.
This figure represents a significant fall, given that 5,400 immigrant minors were taken into custody in July and over 2,000 in each week in June. Since October 1st 2013, over 66,000 unaccompanied minors – mostly from El Salvador, Guatemala and Honduras – have been apprehended while trying to illegally cross the border. The Obama administration called the influx of immigrants a humanitarian crisis and said that it stretched the resources of the Department of Homeland Security to the limit.
Obama asked Congress to give its approval to an emergency aid spending package worth $3.7bn to deal with the crisis; however, Congress retired for the recess last month before the Senate, which is controlled by the Democrats, and the House of Representatives, which is controlled by the Republicans, could reach an agreement over spending terms.
The White House believes that over 150,000 unaccompanied immigrant minors under the age of 18 might flee to the United States from Central America in 2015. The dramatic rise in the number of immigrants crossing the border of late has resulted in Obama’s administration stepping up efforts to stop human smuggling rings.