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ABC 7 Xtra: ‘Breaking Point’ at the border

The surge of immigrants, primarily from Central American, coming to the El Paso sector border has intensified, so much so, the U.S. commissioner for Customs and Border Protection felt compelled to visit the border city to announce,

” Two weeks ago, I briefed the media and testified in Congress that our immigration system was at the breaking point.

That breaking point has arrived this week at our border, ” said Kevin K. McAleenan while holding a press conference only feet from the border barrier and just a few yards from Chihuahuita neighborhood apartments.

The announcement was also only a few blocks away from the Santa Fe bridge, where underneath the bridge, thousands are waiting in what C-B-P officials are calling a transition center, before they are actually processed.

” C-B-P is facing an unprecedented humanitarian and border security crisis all along our Southwest border. And nowhere has that crisis manifested itself for acutely than here in El Paso. ” , continued McAleenan .

This week, ABC 7 Xrta looks deeper into the ramifications , and the spotlight, this crisis is placing the Borderland in.

Its the kind of spotlight which businessman, David Santiago, El Paso Hispanic Chamber of Commerce board member, says can have opposing effects, positive and negative.

Meanwhile, immigration attorney, Daniel Caudillo offers an insight at the legal situation an already overwhelmed immigration court system is facing.

Caudillo breaks down, step-by-step, the process immigrants go through from the time they surrender to Border Patrol agents, claiming political asylum, to the years-long wait many immigrants face before their asylum status hearing is resolved.

” Legislative relief, changes in the law, and closing the vulnerabilities in our legal framework is the only way that this flow is gonna be reduced and we’re gonna be able to restore integrity to our immigration system. Right now we’re not even able to reach the claims of legitimate asylum seekers. Our courts tells us that 10 to 15 per cent of Central American migrants have a legitimate asylum claim at the end of the process. Those people won’t even see a judge for two to five years or more to have that asylum claim adjudicated, ” said the CBP commissioner.

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