Nearly 12,400 people who crossed the border illegally into Del Rio, Texas will have their asylum claims heard by immigration judges, Mayorkas said.
Around 5,000 are still being processed, while 3,000 were detained and deported.
Mayorkas claimed the system was working and that “enforcement guidelines” would be met for those who do not show up to their court hearings.
“We have enforcement guideline in place that provide the individuals who are recent border crossers who do not show up for their hearings are enforcement priorities and will be removed,” he told Fox News.
Fox News’s Chris Wallace pressed back on Mayorkas, asking why the Biden administration allowed the nearly 30,000 migrants to cross the border in the first place:
Fox News’ Chris Wallace to DHS Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas on Haitian migrants:
“Why did you allow them in the country in the first place? Why didn’t you build, forgive me, a wall?”pic.twitter.com/k6APdhntHc
— Alex Salvi (@alexsalvinews) September 26, 2021
“We do not agree with the building of the wall,” Mayorkas replied. “The law provides that individuals can make a claim for humanitarian relief. That is actually one of our proudest traditions.”
It took the Biden administration more than a week to clear out the thousands of Haitian migrants who camped out underneath a bridge in Del Rio in squalid conditions.
Thousands more Haitian migrants are reportedly heading to the southern border from South America, according to Panama officials.
One group of 4,000 migrants is currently traveling through Panama, with another group of 40,000-plus migrants waiting in South America to follow them.