DHS Targets Smugglers in Attempt to Halt Tide of Illegal Immigrants (AP Photo/Carolyn Kaster)
By Brian Freeman | Tuesday, 27 April 2021 06:07 PM
The Biden administration announced a new operation on Tuesday to target smuggling organizations as part of increased efforts to stem the tide of a record number of migrants illegally crossing the nation's southern border, Politico reported.
In announcing the plan, called “Operation Sentinel,” Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas said that federal officials are going after the ability of transnational criminal organizations and their members to travel, trade and access financial assets within the United States.
“We intend to disrupt every facet of the logistical network that these organizations use to succeed,” Mayorkas said.
Troy Miller, who is leading Customs and Border Protection, added that “These organizations are complicit in sexual assault, human trafficking and abandonment of young children, which we’ve routinely encountered. We will take everything we can from you.”
The FBI and State Department are providing help to the department of Homeland Security in carrying out the operation.
Other governments in the region will also help disrupt these networks as part of the operation, officials said.
The migrant situation was the first humanitarian challenge that President Joe Biden faced upon entering the White House, and the administration has for months struggled to come up with a plan deal with the crisis, according to Politico.
Earlier this week, the administration came to an agreement with Guatemalan officials to provide aid in training a task force there that will attempt to secure its border and halt illegal migration.
Despite heated arguments between Democrats and Republicans on the issue of illegal immigrants, both sides of the political aisle are generally able to agree on the widespread influence of smuggling organizations that charge large amounts of money to sneak migrants into the country – and often abuse or abandon those who try to get into the U.S., Fox News reported.