Texas House passed three bills focused on increasing border security
Last Thursday, Texas state representatives passed 3 bills that would appropriate an additional $1 billion to build border barriers, allow police officers to send back migrants who illegally crossed the border, and increase penalties for human smugglers. Democrat representatives opposed the bills but all 3 passed after hours of debate.
The most debated bill was HB 4 which would make it a state crime to illegally enter Texas from Mexico and would allow law enforcement officers to order migrants who crossed the border illegally back into Mexico, in spite of the fact that federal courts have ruled that the federal government has sole jurisdiction over immigration law.
Large numbers of Afghans forced to leave Pakistan ahead of the November 1 deadline
The government of Pakistan set a deadline of November 1st for all people who are in the country illegally to leave or face deportation. The Taliban government in Afghanistan reported large numbers of Afghans returning to the country ahead of the deadline. This order affects a large number of Afghans who make up the majority of migrants living in the region. United Nations agencies report that more than 2 million Afghans without documentation live in Pakistan and approximately 600,000 of those arrived after the fall of Afghanistan in 2021. Pakistani officials stated that the 1.4 million Afghans who are registered as refugees are not included in the order. This expulsion of those without documentation is criticized by U.N. officials, immigrant and refugee rights advocates and the Taliban government alike.
President Biden to host a summit for leaders from the Western Hemisphere
On Friday, November 3, President Biden and other Western Hemisphere leaders will meet for the first Americas Partnership for Economic Prosperity Leaders’ Summit. During the summit the leaders are scheduled to address the economic drivers of irregular migration in the region. “The challenges of large-scale humanitarian migration are real. This summit represents an opportunity for President Biden and other leaders to focus on solutions that prioritizes orderly borders and honors migrants’ human dignity,” said Jennie Murray, President and CEO of the National Immigration Forum.