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Biden administration accuses Texas of blocking patrols access to US-Mexico border

National Guard soldiers roll up fencing on the banks of the Rio Grande river at Shelby Park on January 12, 2024 in Eagle Pass, Texas
National Guard soldiers roll up fencing on the banks of the Rio Grande river at Shelby Park on January 12, 2024 in Eagle Pass, Texas - Copyright GETTY IMAGES NORTH AMERICA/AFP Brandon Bell
National Guard soldiers roll up fencing on the banks of the Rio Grande river at Shelby Park on January 12, 2024 in Eagle Pass, Texas - Copyright GETTY IMAGES NORTH AMERICA/AFP Brandon Bell

The administration of Democratic US President Joe Biden on Friday accused Republican Texas Governor Greg Abbott of preventing the federal border patrol from carrying out its mission by blocking its access to a key sector of the border with Mexico. 

Abbott, a staunch supporter of former president Donald Trump who made the fight against immigration one of the main themes of his electoral campaign, has openly questioned the authority of the Biden administration, accusing it of “deliberate inaction” in the face of a record influx of migrants at the border in recent months. 

In December, an appeals court prohibited the federal border police from damaging the barbed wire installed by Texas near the border town of Eagle Pass, on the Rio Grande, to carry out its missions unless otherwise justified by a medical emergency.

The Department of Justice went to the Supreme Court in early January to have the decision overturned, but this week the Texas National Guard began installing new barbed wire along a stretch of the border, said the Biden administration’s legal advisor, Elizabeth Prelogar, in a new appeal to the top court Friday.

These new obstacles “effectively prohibit Border Patrol agents from accessing or getting near the border along this 2.5-mile stretch of the river,” the appeal said.

Denouncing 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,” the government representative reiterated her request for a cancellation of the decision of the court of appeal. 

AFP
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