EAGLE PASS, Texas — Sources within CBP say the Border Patrol has encountered 11 “aliens of special interest” from Middle Eastern countries in less than a week in its Del Rio sector. During the week of October 8 to October 14, Border Patrol arrested six Iranians, three Lebanese, one Egyptian, and one Saudi national who landed on the banks of the Rio Grande in Texas.
The source, who is not authorized to speak to the media, said the immigrant from Texas is a single adult male who is considered an alien of special interest who arrived from a country that is the subject of a travel warning from the U.S. State Department due to terrorism. he told Breitbart. The sources said that unless there is significant information indicting the migrants who pose a known threat to the United States, the migrants will be released into the United States to pursue their asylum claims.Officials say the continued encounters with special interest migrants are worrisome as tensions in the Middle East rise due to recent Hamas attacks in Israel. “Things are evolving very quickly in that region and migrants from that region continue to arrive at the southern border, creating an intelligence challenge for us,” a source told Breitbart, Texas.
According to sources, based on a list maintained by the FBI at the Terrorist Screening Center (TSC), if the immigrants are not “known terrorists or terrorist suspects” (KSAs), they are likely to be classified as part of some special interest countries. The lack of diplomatic relations with the country makes returning migrants difficult, if not impossible.
Breitbart Texas reported that Border Patrol encountered more than 61,000 special interest aliens in fiscal year 2023, which ended Sept. 30. The number of immigrants from special interest countries increased by more than 140 percent from fiscal year 2022. More than 25,500 people were arrested. In total, more than 86,000 special interest aliens entered the United States illegally in the past two years.
according to 2019 DHS Fact SheetThe term “special interest alien” is defined as follows:
Generally, a SIA refers to a non-U.S. person who potentially poses a national security risk to the United States or its national interests, based on an analysis of their travel patterns. In many cases, such individuals or groups have adopted travel patterns that are known or assessed to be potentially associated with terrorism. DHS’ analysis includes examining travel patterns, origins, and/or travel segments related to the current assessment of the domestic and international threat environment.
This does not mean that all SIAs are “terrorists”; rather, the travel and actions of such individuals indicate a possibleassociation with heinous activities (including terrorism); At the very least, it provides an indicator that requires enhanced testing and further investigation. The term SIA does not refer to any specific derogatory information about an individual. Additionally, DHS has never indicated that the SIA designation has any further meaning.
In fiscal year 2023, Border Patrol apprehended migrants from more than 280 countries, including those from 34 countries listed as countries of special interest, officials said. The remaining special interest aliens who entered the United States during fiscal year 2023 include more than 5,600 Afghans, 3,000 Egyptians, approximately 2,500 Somalis, 2,500 Bangladeshis, 1,300 Pakistanis, and 1,200 Eritreans. approximately 1,000 people from Tajikistan and Kazakhstan.
A smaller number of nearly 1,700 SIAs also entered the United States from Iran, Syria, Morocco, Jordan, Djibouti, Iraq, Yemen, Turkmenistan, Algeria, Libya, Saudi Arabia, Tunisia, and the United Arab Emirates.
SIA enters almost the entire southwestern border in small numbers every day. As Breitbart Texas reported, immigrants from outside the hemisphere, including those from countries of special interest, are encountered more frequently in Arizona.
During a recent trip to the border area near Lukeville, Arizona, Breitbart, Texas, witnessed more than 300 migrants from many non-Spanish-speaking countries surrendering as they waited for Border Patrol agents. The immigrant group mainly included nationals from West African countries, the Middle East, India, Pakistan, and China.
randy clark He is a 32-year veteran of the U.S. Border Patrol. Prior to his retirement, he served as Division Chief of Law Enforcement Operations, directing operations for nine Border Patrol stations within the Del Rio, Texas area. Follow him on Twitter @RandyClarkBBTX.