(Headline USA) Immigration officials revealed this week that they stopped nearly two dozen people whose names are on the terror watchlist from crossing the southern border illegally last year, according to Fox News.
Between Jan. 20 and Dec. 27, 2021, Border Patrol encountered 23 individuals who were on the Terrorist Screening Database. Four were stopped in the Rio Grande Valley Sector, another four in the Del Rio Sector, three in the El Paso Sector, two in the Tuscon Sector, two in the Yuma Sector, four in the El Centro Sector, and four in the San Diego Sector.
The Terrorist Screening Database contains information about those who are known or “reasonably suspected” of being involved in terrorist activities and plots.
Republicans have been warning the Biden administration for months that the president’s refusal to crack down on illegal immigration poses a national security threat.
“Reporting indicates that multiple individuals with terrorist ties have been recently apprehended after illegally crossing the border, and that such encounters may be increasing,” Reps. James Comer, R-Ky., and John Katko, R-N.Y., wrote in a letter to Department of Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas last month.
Former U.S. Customs and Border Protection Commissioner Mark Morgan said this report raises even more questions about the state of our immigration system.
“The real question we need to be asking this administration is, what did you do with the 23 people from the Terrorism Screening Database you took custody of?” Morgan said.
“Their arrest would have triggered further investigation by the FBI and other law enforcement entities. Did you release some or all? Did you remove some or all?”
Republicans are also worried that this potential terror threat will grow if the Biden administration moves forward with repealing Title 42, a public health order passed by the Trump administration that allows border officials to immediately turn away migrants who entered the country illegally.
“The American people deserve to know whether President Biden’s weak border policies are allowing terrorists to enter our homeland,” Comer and Katko said.