Videos taken by Al Jazeera and Reuters show law enforcement officers using aggressive tactics when they encounter migrants, who are largely Haitian, to stop them from entering the US.
At one point in a Reuters video, an officer’s horse nearly charges at one of the migrants, who falls back and into the water. That video shows officers at the water’s edge, twirling long bridles as migrants cross the border on the US shoreline of the Rio Grande. Then, as law enforcement officers attempt to corrupt the migrants, one of the officers is seen twirling a horse’s bridle near one of the migrants.
Vice President Kamala Harris called the images “horrifying” and said she supports an investigation into the matter.
Harris said on Tuesday, “What I showed about those guys on horseback is terrifying. And I fully support what is happening right now, which is a thorough investigation of what is really going on out there.” Is.” .
“But humans should never be treated this way and I’m very upset about it and I’ll talk to (Department of Homeland Security) Secretary (Alejandro) Mayerkas about it later today,” Harris said.
Migrants are located at a temporary site under the Del Rio International Bridge in Texas as they wait to be processed by US immigration officials. They sleep in dirt, surrounded by growing piles of garbage, exposed to the elements and without food and water, in hopes of being processed by the US Border Patrol in bulk.
Earlier on Tuesday, Meyerkas said he was “horrified” by the situation.
“I was horrified by what I saw,” Meyerkas told Granthshala’s Brianna Keeler on “New Day.” “I’ll let the investigation do its thing. But the pictures I saw really upset me. It defies all the values we want to instill in our people.”
Meyerkas announced on Monday that the department would investigate the situation. Asked by Keeler whether it was a “crisis”, he called it a “heartbreaking situation” and a “tremendous challenge”.
He said, “I don’t in any way belittle the humanitarian issue that it presents, but I want to be clear that we have a plan to address it, respecting the needs of individuals, and we will stick to that plan.” are being implemented,” he said.
Meyerkas said that US officials “have already moved about 4,000, maybe more than 4,000 migrants under that bridge,” adding that they are moving more migrants “very quickly to other processing centers”. So that we can ensure their safety and security and the safety of the community.”
“We expect to see a dramatic change in the next 48 to 96 hours,” he said.
When asked about President Joe Biden’s reaction to the videos, White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki said Tuesday that she “also felt they were terrifying and terrifying.”
Meyerkas, who on Tuesday defended the use of horse patrol, said the images “defy all the values we want to instill in our people” and called on the US government and humanitarian organizations to address the situation. are working.
“When I toured under the bridge and saw him working with the American Red Cross, Department of Health and Human Services, World Central Kitchen, I saw in his people the values that we carry in the exhibition, a vulnerable population. of migrants under the bridge in Del Rio,” he told Keeler. “It reflects who we are, and any abuse or mistreatment of a person … our values and who we are and what we stand for.”
This story has been updated with additional feedback and background information.
Granthshala’s Jasmine Wright, Jason Hoffman, Priscilla Alvarez, Geneva Sands, Betsy Klein, Paul LeBlanc and Paul P. Murphy contributed to this report.
Credit : www.cnn.com