(PresidentialWire.com)- In an interview with Axios last week, Panama’s foreign minister, Erika Mouynes, said that, prior to the flood of over 15,000 Haitians that massed in Del Rio, Texas, her government had warned the White House that as many as 60,000 illegal “migrants” were making their way to the US/Mexico border.
Mouynes told Axios that they had contacted “every single authority that we can think of,” telling them to pay attention to what was happening. She called on Washington to coordinate with other countries in the region to come up with a plan to deal with the flood of “migrants.”
On Monday and Tuesday, Mouynes met with members of Congress as well as with Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas. After one meeting, Senator Ted Cruz told Fox News that Mouynes had described to them how this year, her country had seen over 80,000 Haitian immigrants and evacuees “crossing from South America, through Panama” and heading to the United States.
According to Axios, the Panamanian government reported that nearly 27,000 migrants were expected to pass through the jungles of the Darien Gap region in September alone. That is more than the total number that passed through during the entire year in 2019.
After the 2010 earthquake in Haiti, tens of thousands of Haitians found asylum in South America. But now, as jobs there have dried up, they have decided to leave South America and make the journey north to the US knowing that the Biden administration will no doubt let them in.
Mouynes told Axios that Panama, in partnership with its two immediate neighbors, Columbia and Costa Rica, have started a migrant quota system. However, other South American countries need to set up similar systems if they want to keep migration numbers manageable, Mouynes explained.
Last week, Secretary Mayorkas revealed that 13,000 of the Haitian migrants from the most recent surge in Del Rio will have their cases heard by an immigration judge. What’s more as many as ten to twelve-thousand have already been released into the United States.
The Department of Homeland Security claims that another 8,000 Haitians were returned “voluntarily” to Mexico, while another four thousand were being processed for expulsion or removal by DHS. Nearly 4,000 have allegedly already been deported back to Haiti.