• Politics

    2 migrant children and their mother are dead near Eagle Pass park

    Texas officers took control over Shelby Park against the city’s wishes on Wednesday and have since blocked U.S. Border Patrol agents from entering.

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    Three migrants drowned in the Rio Grande, near the Eagle Pass park that Texas troopers have taken control over, U.S. Rep. Henry Cuellar, D-Laredo, said in a written statement on Saturday.

    State officers and National Guard members have been denying U.S. Border Patrol agents entry to the 47-acre Shelby Park. Border Patrol agents learned Friday evening six migrants were in distress. Cuellar said that Border Patrol made multiple attempts to relay the information to state agents, first unsuccessfully via telephone and again verbally at the park’s entrance gate.

    “Texas Military Department soldiers stated they would not grant (Border Patrol) access to the migrants – even in the event of an emergency – and that they would send a soldier to investigate the situation,” Cuellar said in the statement on X, formerly known as Twitter.

    The bodies of the three migrants, a female adult and two children, were recovered by Mexican authorities on Saturday morning, Cuellar said. Officials have not yet released the names or any other information on the deceased.

    U.S. Custom and Border Protection did not immediately confirm the death of the migrants.

    “This is a tragedy, and the state bears responsibility,” Cuellar, a ranking member of the House Homeland Security Appropriations Subcommittee, wrote.

    Starting on Wednesday night, the Texas Department of Public Safety erected concertina wire and fencing at Shelby Park to close off access to the public, said Eagle Pass Mayor Rolando Salinas earlier this week. The move from the state was against the wishes of city officials.

    Border Patrol agents had routinely used the park to patrol the border, used a boat ramp to launch their boats and a staging area to inspect migrants who have been apprehended, according to a court filing from the U.S. Department of Justice.

    “Texas’ new actions since the government’s filing demonstrate an escalation of the state’s measures to block Border Patrol’s ability to patrol or even to surveil the border and be in a position to respond to emergencies,” Elizabeth B. Prelogar, the DOJ’s solicitor general, wrote in the filing to the Supreme Court.

    Eagle Pass has been the epicenter of Abbott’s immigration enforcement efforts in the past year. Thousands of migrants have crossed the border illegally in the area, and many have been injured trying to get through the concertina wire that the state deployed on the banks of the Rio Grande.

    This article in this post was originally published on the Texas Tribune website and parts of it are republished here, with permission under Creative Commons.


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