Hundreds of frustrated migrants storm US border

 Hundreds of migrants tried to rush into the United States from Mexico on Sunday.

The sudden crush prompted opponents of President Joe Biden to call for better border security.

The group of mostly Venezue­lan nationals attempted to cross a bridge connecting Ciudad Juarez with El Paso, Texas.

The migrants broke through Mexican security, but were stopped by barbed wire and US border agents in riot gear.

“We all ran, and they put a fence with barbed wire around us,” said Jackson Solis, a 23-year-old Ven­ezuelan who went to the bridge on Sunday. “They threw tear gas at us.”

Videos posted on social media showed the crowd, which included several children, attempting to cross the bridge before retreating back to the Mexican side.

The incident prompted criticism from Republican leaders. Texas Senator, John Cornyn, accused President Biden of failing to work with congressional leaders to stem the flow of migrants.

“I think part of the president’s policies are attracting more illegal immigration and what the Border Patrol calls ‘pull factors’, in other words, the perception that there are no consequences associated with coming here outside of legal immigration channels,” he told Fox News.

In a statement, US Customs and Border Patrol (CBP) said that the group posed “a potential threat to make a mass entry”.

A record total of 2.76 million migrants were stopped from entering the United States in the year ending September 2022. The high levels continued until January, when there was a sharp drop, according to the latest available figures.

Some migrants in Sunday’s crowd claimed frustration with a new US government app meant to streamline the asylum application process. Others told reporters they heard a rumour that they would be let into the United States, sup­posedly because of a “day of the migrant” celebration.

Earlier this year, the Biden administration rolled out a smartphone app called CBP One, which is supposed to allow asylum seekers to book appointments in advance of their arrival at the border. —BBC

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