The Secretary of Homeland Security (DHS), Alejandro Mayorkas, ordered on Wednesday a “swift” investigation into the “unnecessary” violence used by Border Patrol agents against some of the Haitians who have crossed the border with Mexico irregularly in recent days.
Mayorkas commented in a hearing before the House Homeland Security Committee on the controversial photographs of the events that took place this weekend near the town of Del Rio, Texas.
“They do not reflect who we are as a country and they do not reflect the Border Patrol,” said the official, who called the violence used “unnecessary”.
One of the images shows a Border Patrol agent on a horse grabbing a migrant by the shirt, while apparently hitting him with what looks like a whip, on the banks of the Río Bravo (Rio Grande), which separates this country from Mexico.
Mayorkas announced a “swift and forceful investigation,” while informing that the agents involved have been removed from border-related security work and will focus on “administrative duties.”
“The facts will guide the actions we take. We will go all the way. We must conduct this investigation thoroughly, but quickly. It will be completed in days,” he added.
The government has urged Haitians not to take the “dangerous path” to their country, after more than 13,000 migrants, mostly from the Caribbean country, crossed the border irregularly from Mexico in recent days.
In a press conference on Monday precisely from Del Rio, Mayorkas reiterated that his country’s borders “are not open” and that migrants “should not undertake the dangerous journey” to the border.
The government of President Joe Biden has already begun to deport the more than 13,000 migrants who have arrived in the last few days in that Texan city.