White House says National Guard part of Trump’s border strategy
The White House on Tuesday said US President Donald Trump planned to deploy the National Guard, a reserve military force, to the guard the southern border with Mexico.
The statement came hours after Trump talked to reporters about “guarding our border with the military” to stop illegal immigrants from entering the country., a move that even took his aides by surprise.
“We have horrible, horrible and very unsafe laws in the United States,” Trump said. “We are preparing for the military to secure our border between Mexico and the United States.” He added that he would be discussing it with his national security team later in the day.
After the meeting, the White House said in a statement that Trump “received a follow up briefing to discuss his administration’s strategy, which includes the mobilisation of the National Guard”.
Trump has been under pressure from his core support base on border security, and some have been critical of his failure to get adequate funding for the wall he has promised to build along the southern border — he got a meagre $1.6 billion for it in the recently passed $1.3 trillion spending bill.
There has also been a growing concern among his supporters about a large group of Central Americans, largely Hondurans, marching through Mexico and headed for the border to cross into the United States. The group has been called a “caravan”.
Trump spoke about the “caravan” at a news briefing at the White House on Tuesday and said he wanted Mexico to prevent people in it from crossing into the US. “The caravan makes me very sad that this can happen to the United States, where you have thousands of people that decide to just walk into our country, and we don’t have any laws that can protect it,” he said.