By JENNIE TAER, INVESTIGATIVE REPORTER | October 31, 2022
Border Patrol agents and illegal migrants from Venezuela had a violent clash at the southern border on Monday, U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) said in a statement to the Daily Caller News Foundation. The incident occurred when the group of Venezuelans, who were engaged in a protest, tried to cross the border from Mexico into El Paso, Texas, along the Rio Grande River, illegally, CBP told the DCNF. The situation grew tense as one of the protestors assaulted a border agent with a flag pole and another person threw a rock that injured one of the agents.
The attacks led agents to deploy “crowd control measures” that included a pepper ball launching system. (RELATED: EXCLUSIVE: ‘Facilitators Of Traffickers’: Guatemalan President Says US Needs To ‘Pressure’ Countries To Stop Flow Of Illegal Migrants)
The group then returned to Mexico, CBP said, adding that the incident is under review.
“Customs and Border Protection’s Office of Professional responsibility will review the incident. The situation is still on going, further information may be provided as it becomes available,” CBP said.
Due to an early October Biden administration rule, Venezuelan migrants who cross into the U.S. illegally are expelled immediately to Mexico. CBP encountered over 187,000 illegal Venezuelan migrants during fiscal year 2022, according to agency statistics. Some migrants from Venezuela may come due to a “perception that once they reach the border, they have a greater chance of remaining in the United States, based on a misunderstood perception of temporary protected status,” an internal Department of Homeland Security (DHS) document obtained by the Daily Caller News Foundation in late October said.
“These actions make clear that there is a lawful and orderly way for Venezuelans to enter the United States, and lawful entry is the only way,” DHS Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas said of the policy at the time.
However, it is unclear if the incident is related to the policy change.